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Anthropologists to Examine Human Bone Found in Ohio River-Submerged Vehicle of Nguyen Family That Went Missing in 2002 from Delhi, in Cincinnati News

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Stephanie Van Nguyen and her children John and Kristina have been missing from Delhi since 2002.Photos: Delhi Township Police

A local cold case may finally close soon.

Officials are preparing to lab-test a bone found in a 1997 Nissan Pathfinder that was pulled out of the Ohio River on Oct. 14. Delhi Township Police confirmed Oct. 15 that the vehicle had belonged to Stephanie Van Nguyen, a Delhi woman who, along with her two young children, had gone missing in 2002.

The Nguyen saga has lasted for nearly two decades. In 2002, Delhi Police said, Nguyen had left a note saying that she’d planned to drive into the Ohio River near Cincinnati. She and her kids Kristina, 4, and John, 3, disappeared, but police were unable to find the family or Nguyen’s vehicle at the time. 

Earlier this year, Delhi Police reopened the case, partnering with the Hamilton County Police Association Dive Team and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, among other agencies, to use new technology to scan the Ohio River. On Oct. 13, officials located Nguyen’s Pathfinder underwater near Aurora, Indiana, about 23 miles west and downstream of Delhi, according to a release from the Indiana State Police.

Since recovering Nguyen’s vehicle, Indiana State Police and anthropologists from the University of Indiana have been investigating its contents. The teams found a bone in the Pathfinder on Oct. 18 that anthropologists believe to be human. They’re sending it out for lab tests to determine if it belongs to a member of the Nguyen family.

“Should you have any questions regarding the search of the vehicle or the remains that were found, please contact Indiana State Police Sergeant Stephen Wheeles @ (812) 689-5000 or via email [email protected],” Delhi Police said on Oct. 19.

Read the Oct. 15 update from Delhi Township Police below.

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