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Huckleberry pickers find human remains in western Montana

Montana

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SUPERIOR, Montana (AP) — Huckleberry pickers found human remains near an Interstate 90 rest area in western Montana near the Idaho border that may be those of a couple missing since late 2017, Mineral County officials said Thursday.

The remains were found Wednesday afternoon near the westbound off-ramp to the rest area, Sheriff Mike Toth said.

An investigator with the Montana Department of Criminal Investigation determined there were two sets of bones, Toth said.

Suzanne Michelle Labelle, 24, and Sherwin Fernandez Lamando Jr., 25, were reported missing by Labelle’s mother in December 2017 after the mother received a suicide note in the mail, Toth said.

Their families are from California, but the couple were last known to have been in Issaquah, Washington, Toth said.

Their car — with an Arkansas license plate on it — was found at the rest stop on Dec. 1, 2017, but a search turned up no sign of the couple.

The bones, which had been scattered, were taken to the state crime lab in Missoula Thursday for DNA analysis to confirm the identities, Toth said. Investigators did not find a weapon, he said.

No other people have been reported missing in the area, Toth said. He has notified their families.

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