Michigan State Police investigate human remains in case of missing Skelton brothers

The Michigan State Police are investigating new clues from Montana after a box of human remains was discovered in a shed in Missoula.

According to police in Missoula, Montana, human bones and teeth were found in a box in a shed in September. Forensic testing revealed they likely belonged to children between the ages of 2 and 4, 5 and 8, and 6 and 10. 

The remains were compared against the national database and authorities told FOX 2 the Skelton brothers case is one of the more likely scenarios. Missoula police then reached out to Michigan police. 

Missoula police are in contact with Michigan State Police because the descriptions match those of the missing boys, but have nothing confirmed.

The Skelton brothers - Andrew, Alexander, and Tanner - were reported missing from Morenci in Lenawee County the day after Thanksgiving in 2010.

At the time the boys went missing they were in the care of their father, John Skelton. He pleaded no contest to three counts of unlawful imprisonment in September 2011, after he claimed he gave the boys to unknown individuals. Skelton is currently serving a 10-15 year prison sentence.

In the years since, the boys' disappearance has been vigorously investigated by the Morenci Police Department, FBI and Michigan State Police (MSP). Significant assistance has also been provided by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. In 2013, the MSP became the lead investigating agency.

Investigators continue to be vigilant in following any leads on this case and ask people spending time in the woods to be their extra "eyes and ears" as they walk the areas of lower Michigan and northern Ohio. If anything suspicious is located, please contact the MSP immediately.

UPDATE: Michigan State Police has released a statement on the investigation, saying that there has been no confirmed connection proven to link the findings with the missing boys.

"On Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017, the Michigan State Police (MSP) First District Special Investigation Section learned that human remains were found in Montana in September, that were recently determined to likely be the skeletal remains of three children. 

MSP investigators are working with Missoula police to determine if there is any connection to Andrew, Alexander and Tanner Skelton who were reported missing from Morenci in Lenawee County the day after Thanksgiving in 2010. There has been nothing previously reported to police linking the brothers to Montana, and it is not known at this time if the remains are from related siblings.

Further forensic testing has been requested by police in Montana that may provide more answers. Until this testing is completed and additional investigation by law enforcement in Montana occurs, it cannot be determined if these remains belong to the missing Skelton brothers.

In the years since the Skelton brothers disappeared, their vanishing has been vigorously investigated by the Morenci Police Department, FBI and MSP. Significant assistance has also been provided by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

In 2013, the MSP became the lead investigating agency. New age-progression photos of the three brothers were released in November 2016.

At the time the boys went missing they were in the care of their father, John Skelton. Skelton pleaded no contest to three counts of unlawful imprisonment in September 2011, after he claimed he gave the boys to unknown individuals. Skelton is currently serving a 10-15 year prison sentence.

The public is asked to provide any tips or information to the MSP at www.michigan.gov/michtip or by calling 517-636-0689."

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