By Ross Guidotti

WESTMORELAND COUNTY (KDKA) – Police have released a sketch of an unidentified teenager whose remains were exhumed from a grave in Westmoreland County.

It’s part of a new effort to identify the girl, although one local family believes they already know who it is.

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Mary Thompson of Pitcarin only has one wish if the body is that of her missing sister.

“I want to bring my sister home to her family, her loved ones. She’s been missing all this time, lying there by herself. I want to put Teala with her mother, brothers, and sisters. I want her to have a proper burial, and make her safe.”

Teala Thompson was 13-years-old when she disappeared in 1967, that same year the body of a 13-year-old girl was discovered at a Westmoreland County landfill.
She had been beaten and buried in a Potters Field in Hempfield Township.

All but forgotten until Trooper Brian Gross came along, determined to find out who this girl was.

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“It’s somebody’s child, that’s the reason. Bring some closure for somebody,” Gross said.

The remains were exhumed from the grave, along with an unrelated infant buried with her. That’s when the Centers for Missing and Exploited Children went to work.
“They were able to use a C-T scan of the skull done at Children’s Hospital, and review an autopsy report,” Trooper Steve Limani said.

The end result was a composite of what the murdered teen may have looked like. The family saw the composite first.

“They feel that it’s her. We are taking DNA samples from the family to try and determine if the body we exhumed is Teala,” officials say.
If the results come back as a match the next step will be finding Teala’s killer.

Figuring out the identity of the infant that was buried with the 13-year-old girl may prove more difficult, but State Police say advancements in DNA technology may make that possible.

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