TROY, Mo. – A break in a decades-old Missouri cold case, as Lincoln County authorities announced the successful identification of human remains found in 1984.
Thanks to breakthroughs in forensic DNA testing and analysis by anthropology students at Southeast Missouri State University and a private laboratory, the remains have been identified as Jack Langeneckert of Florissant, Missouri.
Langeneckert’s remains were found inside a pump house on a farm near Highway F in June 1984. However, Langeneckert was reported missing in 1982, Lt. David Hill, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, said. His car was found parked at St. Louis Airport one week after his disappearance.
At the time of the discovery, authorities were limited by the investigative technology of their day. They determined the remains belonged to a man of European descent, but could only guesstimate he was between 40 and 80 years of age at the time of his death. They knew he died of a gunshot wound to the head, and that it was a homicide.
The victim was dressed in expensive clothing, including a Bill Blass grey suit with red pinstripes, a grey or blue tie in a Windsor knot around his neck, and a black pea coat.
Investigators believed the man had been dead for approximately six months at the time his remains were discovered.
A search of the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) found no match, and the remains went unidentified for 38 years.
In spring 2022, the sheriff’s office had success in a separate matter involving unidentified remains via a partnership with SEMO and the lab Othram Inc., and teamed up again to solve this case.
Lt. Hill said familial DNA led to the successful identification of Langeneckert. An exact time and date of death remains unknown. Langeneckert was working as a real estate agent at the time of his disappearance.
Hill believes investigators are a step closer to solving the case and is asking for the public’s help.
Anyone with information on Langeneckert’s disappearance should contact the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 636-528-8546 or Detective Alyssa Erson at firstname.lastname@example.org. Anonymous tips may also be submitted through the sheriff’s office website.