Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Harrison Graham: The Corpse Collector

Identifying the Victims

Robin DeShazor
Robin DeShazor

Another neighbor came forward to tell the police that she'd seen Graham beat Robin DeShazor, a dire warning that DeShazor could be among the dead.  Local forensic dentist Haskell Askins came into the case to assist with identification via dental records.  "We're looking for uniqueness that could be found in a single tooth," he told Philadelphia Inquirer reporters, "or a fragment of a tooth."  He would also need to have the actual dental records of a suspected victim for comparison purposes, which meant that relatives who feared that a loved one was among the carnage had to produce those records. At the very least, he said, he could give an age estimate.  Only one of the six full sets of remains recovered had not had dental work done.

The digging around the building did produce bones, but they turned out to be from dogs, and reports indicated that Graham had once owned three different dogs and had buried them after they'd died.  No more human bodies or parts were recovered, although several blackened pieces of recovered bone were sent for analysis.

Graham's family put out an appeal for him to turn himself in.  They did not believe that he had killed the women.  One younger brother told reporters, "Marty was afraid to go to our grandmother's funeral.  He stayed outside."  He was certain that Graham could not have been sleeping in the same room with corpses.

On August 15, six days after the initial discovery, there was another grisly find. 


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