TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Anthropologists will return to the shuttered Dozier School for Boys this week to investigate the possible discovery of more unmarked graves on the former reform school's grounds.

  • Potential graves discovered by contractor removing Hurricane Michael debris
  • 27 possible graves located using ground-penetrating radar
  • Hundreds of boys abused at Dozier School in 1950s and 1960s
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The potential graves were discovered by a contractor removing Hurricane Michael debris. The Dozier property sits in the Panhandle town of Marianna, which was hit hard by the storm.

Ground-penetrating radar has identified 27 potential graves in the area flagged by the contractor.

University of South Florida anthropologist Erin Kimmerle led a 2013 project that resulted in the exhumations of the remains of more than 50 bodies buried in unmarked graves at Dozier. 

She will lead the team for the two-week project, starting Monday.

Some of those remains showed signs of blunt-force trauma, seemingly confirming widespread allegations of murder and sexual abuse of students by Dozier staffers in the 1950s and '60s.

Some former students, however, have suggested that many more bodies are likely buried on the grounds. James 'Harley' DeNyke, a Dozier student from 1964 to 1966, is unsurprised by the recent discovery.

"A lot of the guys that I’ve talked to over the years, they have stated that they know where bodies are buried, and we know that there’s a hundred-eighty three on the books that came in, but they’re not on the books going out. So, what happened to them? Where are they? Who are they, and when were they disposed of?" DeNyke asked.