COLD CASE MYSTERY: Teen victim of 1987 fiery crash still unidentified

TAMPA, FL (WFLA) – When forensics professionals gathered at the University of South Florida this summer, they worked to identify nine ‘cold case’ victims – nine unsolved homicide cases that happened in the Tampa Bay area. They worked to restore the victims’ face and help identify them.

PHOTOS: The teen victim’s face restored by USF researchers

This unidentified teen was found in Alachua County. He died on Nov. 6, 1987. Around 11:50 a.m. that day he was driving a 1986 black Chevrolet convertible going north on Interstate 75. Law enforcement officers were pursuing him when he slammed into the concrete barrier at high speed, flipped over into the oncoming lane and struck a semi-tractor trailer head-on, according to the case files.

The Corvette burst into flames consuming the driver and destroying all the evidence. The body was unrecognizable. But some witnesses told the law enforcement that they saw the teen at a gas station prior to the crash. He was “Italian” looking, about 6 feet tall, with shoulder-length brown hair.

According to the autopsy, the boy was 16-17 years old, 5 feet 11.5 inches tall, and weighed about 145-160 pounds. According to the USF research, he had several dental crowns and there was evidence that one tooth had a recent root canal where treatment may have not been completed.

If you have any information about this case, please contact Detective Kevin Allen at (352) 384-3323.

PHOTOS: Hope for 9 Florida cold case victims provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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