Cemal Cansev


Cemal, circa 2003

  • Missing Since 06/27/2003
  • Missing From Brooklyn, New York
  • Classification Endangered Runaway
  • Sex Male
  • Race White
  • Age 16 years old
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male.

Details of Disappearance

CemalĀ disappeared from Brooklyn, New York on June 27, 2003. He was classified as a runaway for years, although he didn't take any belongings with him and his family said he wasn't having any personal problems. In February 2011, his body was identified.

Cemal's body had been found floating offshore near Hart Island in Brooklyn just ten days following his disappearance. Due to decomposition, the facial features were unrecognizable. The medical examiner's office believed the body was that of an Asian man about 25 years old (Cansev was in fact of Turkish descent), which is part of the reason why it took so long to identify.

Neither the police nor the medical examiner's office tried to match the John Doe's fingerprints or dental records with local missing person reports. DNA testing was finally used to identify the body, over seven years after it was found. Cemal's family plans to file suit against the city; they claim the police and the medical examiner's office mishandled the investigation and Cansev should have been identified much sooner than he was.

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