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RCMP identify human remains found in Fort McMurray, cause of death not determined

The RCMP announced Wednesday that human remains discovered in Fort McMurray last month are those of a 35-year-old woman who was reported missing nearly 18 months ago.

The remains were discovered by someone in a wooded area in the community’s Thickwood neighbourhood on March 20, police said in a news release.

READ MORE: Police investigate discovery of human remains in Fort McMurray

The RCMP were called in to investigate and have since determined the remains are those of Ellie Herman, who was reported missing to police by family on Oct. 17, 2019. Although an autopsy was completed on March 24, a cause of death has yet to be determined.

“Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Ellie during this difficult time,” the RCMP said, adding its major crimes unit continues to investigate what happened to her.

Police said the area where Herman’s remains were discovered remains closed to the public as police continue to search for clues about what happened to her.

Police did not provide a photo of Herman but said she was an Indigenous woman who was about five-foot-one and 120 pounds. She had black hair and brown eyes.

Anyone who may have information about what happened to Herman is asked to call the Wood Buffalo RCMP detachment at 780-788-4040. Tips can also be anonymously submitted to Crime Stoppers by phone at 1-800-222-8477 or online at

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