Update: Missing man's ID found at Gap Creek scene; road work near site curtailed during probe

John Thompson • Jan 7, 2013 at 9:11 PM

ELIZABETHTON — The investigation of the skeletal remains found along Gap Creek Road last week was continuing Monday and Carter County Sheriff Chris Mathes released the name found on identification card with the remains.

Mathes said the identification papers, including a Tennessee driver's license, were for Zane Baxter Gervin II, 45, who has been the subject of a missing person investigation.

Mathes released the name after he learned Gervin family members had acknowledged the man's death on Facebook.

Mathes said the release of the information on the identification papers did not mean the body had been positively identified. He said the Sheriff's Department and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation were awaiting forensic proof of the identity.

"There have been cases where criminals have left a different identification on a body to throw investigators off," Mathes said.

The investigation was to go into a higher gear Monday, Mathes said. Forensic Anthropology experts from the famed University of Tennessee Body Farm were to examine the location where the body was found on Gap Creek Road.

In anticipation of the team's examination of the site, Mathes had already asked the Tennessee Department of Transportation and Summers-Taylor Construction Company to curtail excavation work around the site until after the UT investigators have completed their work.

The remains found Wednesday along a section of Gap Creek Road near the intersection of Dry Creek Road. A TDOT survey crew found the remains. The remains were lying in the woods, about 50 yards from the highway.

The location is in a remote section of the highway where there are no houses within sight, and there is a long straight section of the curvy Gap Creek Highway.

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