Three human skulls donated to thrift store

VIDEO: Human skulls donated to Goodwill

SEATTLE — Quick Facts:

  • 3 skulls donated to Bellevue Goodwill
  • 2 used in clinic or for teaching
  • 3rd skull is that of Native American child

The King County Medical Examiner’s Office is asking for the public’s help to find who donated three human skulls to a Bellevue thrift store.

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There is no information about who donated the skulls to the Bellevue Goodwill or how they came to be in the donor’s possession.

The KCME said two of the skulls of from adults and were clearly used in a medical clinic or teaching setting.

The third skull appears to be the fragile remains of a Native American child. Forensic anthropologist Kathy Taylor said the skull is that of a 5 or 6-year-old and is at least 100 years old.

According to state law, the Native American skull must be returned to its tribe of origin, but the ME needs more information to identify the correct tribe.

The office is asking that the person who donated the skulls come forward, without penalty, to provide more details about where the skull came from.

The skulls were donated in June to the Goodwill at 14515 NE 20th Street in Bellevue.  Employees there realized the skulls were human remains and contacted the Medical Examiner’s Office and police.

The ME provided photos of a scarf, box and the two medical skulls included in the donation.  See the photos here.

A photo of the child's skull was not provided out of respect.

The KCME said if you are given or inherit clinical or archaeological remains, you can turn them in without penalty to the Medical Examiner's Office.  If you inadvertently discover human remains, such as buried or in a public place, you must notify law enforcement.

Anyone with information about the three donated skulls, or who has other human skeletal remains, should contact the King County Medical Examiner’s Office at 206-731-3232, ext.1.

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