012019 MMIW 02 ps.JPG

Ayasha Momberg, 6, holds a photo of her cousin Ashley Heavyrunner Loring, 20, who disappeared from the Blackfeet Indian Reservation in north-central Montana in the summer of 2017.

A set of human remains found on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation last December were not those of Ashley HeavyRunner Loring, the FBI has concluded.

HeavyRunner Loring, 20, had vanished from the Blackfeet Reservation in summer 2017. The ongoing search for her has drawn national attention and prompted calls to improve law enforcement's handling of missing and murdered Native American women.

The Dec. 13 discovery of human remains on the reservation sparked speculation that they might be HeavyRunner Loring. But the FBI Laboratory in Quantico, Va. has concluded otherwise.

“Anthropological analyses suggest that the remains are of probable historic or ancient origin,” it announced in a press release Friday. “The examination also estimates that the remains are that of a Native American male, between 45 to 60 years old.”

It said that the agency’s Salt Lake City Office has requested that the remains be returned so that they could be turned over to the Blackfeet Tribal Historic Preservation Office.

Get News Alerts delivered directly to you.

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.