Authorities in central Pennsylvania say remains found on the property of a man charged in the death of his daughter-in-law are indeed those of the woman who disappeared in 1999.
Huntington County District Attorney George Zanic told The (Altoona) Mirror on Thursday that DNA testing had confirmed that the remains recovered in May from a property in rural Warriors Mark Township were those of 23-year-old Sherry Leighty.
Altoona police detective Cpl. Matthew Starr said Leighty's family was informed about the identification on Thursday morning.
The victim's father-in-law, 66-year-old Kenneth Leighty of Altoona, is charged with homicide and related counts. Kenneth Leighty's attorney has said he helped investigators find the remains of the mother of three on his property about 100 miles east of Pittsburgh.
Sherry Leighty's husband -- the defendant's son, Aaron -- told investigators that he at first believed she might have run off to Maine with another man, but began to doubt that after she failed to contact their children in subsequent weeks, months and years. Officials said their divorce had been finalized days before she disappeared.