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Barry County remains identified

(AP) Authorities say skeletal remains found last year in southwest Missouri are those of a Springfield man missing since 2012.

The Barry County Sheriff’s Office announced Friday the remains are those of 35-year-old Ronald Jessup Brightwell.

A landowner found the remains and some jewelry in a field near rural Jenkins. The remains weren’t identified until a woman told the sheriff’s office the jewelry belonged to her half-brother. Henry’s brother and father were then tested and the DNA matched.

Brightwell hadn’t been seen since 2012 but Barry County Detective Doug Henry said he wasn’t reported missing until 2014 because his family often didn’t see him for months.

Henry says investigators aren’t sure if a crime is involved but Brightwell spent time with people known for illegal activities.

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