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John Wayne Gacy
FILE - This 1978 file photo shows serial killer John Wayne Gacy. Cook County Sheriff Sheriff Tom Dart plans to provide an update on a years long effort to identify unnamed victims of Gacy Wednesday, July 19, 2017 in Chicago. Dart will discuss the investigation that he launched in 2011. His office exhumed the skeletal remains of eight of at least 33 young men Gacy stabbed or strangled in the 1970s. (AP Photo/File)

Authorities identified a previously unknown victim of serial killer John Wayne Gacy



An Illinois sheriff’s office on Wednesday announced it has identified a previously unknown victim of serial killer John Wayne Gacy.

Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said in a news release that 16-year-old James “Jimmie” Byron Haakenson is one of Gacy’s victims.

Haakenson reportedly left his Minnesota home in 1976 and was last heard from that year after calling his mother and telling her he was in Chicago.

The teen’s body was purportedly unearthed underneath the crawl space of Gacy’s Chicago area home in 1978 and then buried without being identified.

Some Twitter users on Wednesday voiced disgust for Gacy, who was convicted of killing 33 young men and then executed in 1994.

Haakenson was reportedly one of eight of Gacy’s victims who was buried without being previously identified.

Dart’s office exhumed the remains of all eight in 2011 to try discovering who each person was through DNA testing.

Dart reportedly asked relatives of young men who disappeared between 1970 and Gacy’s arrest in 1978 to submit saliva samples.

The DNA of those submitting samples was then cross-referenced with DNA from the remains, leading to the identification of the first unknown victim in 2011.

Authorities named William George Bundy, a 19-year-old construction worker, as one of Gacy’s victims months after starting their identification efforts that year.

Dart said Wednesday that there is a “strong genetic association” between Haakenson’s remains and two of his siblings.

Gacy became notorious for his charitable work as an amateur clown, leading many to dub him “the Killer Clown.”

The serial killer stabbed one of his victims to death and strangled the others, burying most of their bodies in a crawl space beneath him home or throwing them in a local river.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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