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Who is Balmore Man? A new image from the Scottish Cold Case Unit aims to identify a body found near Glasgow

A new facial reconstruction image of a man whose body was found in woodland outside Glasgow more than 11 years ago has been released.

Cold case investigators hope this image will help identify the ‘Balmore Man’ who was found hanging from a tree in a heavily wooded area of ​​Golf Club Road in Balmore, East Dunbartonshire on October 16, 2011.

It is believed that the man may have been dead for up to six months before he was found. It is also believed that he was seriously injured a few months before his death.

The mystery depends on the discovery of human remains.

Police said there were no suspicious circumstances but were unable to identify him despite earlier appeals and extensive enquiries.

In a new bid to solve the case, investigators from Glasgow Caledonian University’s Scottish Cold Case Unit, in partnership with missing persons charity Locate International, have released a new facial reconstruction and 3D images of the man’s clothing.

The images, released by the University of Dundee, are being shown alongside photographs of the man’s belongings and drone footage of the woodland where his body was found.

A forensic examination revealed that the man suffered injuries before death, which may have affected his appearance, quality of life and gait.

He is aged between 25 and 34, between 5ft 8in and 6ft 1in tall, of slight build, white European with fair hair.

Dr Maureen Taylor, co-director of the Scottish Epidemiological Unit at Glasgow Caledonian University, said: ‘The team looked at what she was wearing and what she was wearing, the geographical profile of where she was found and what she was wearing. Missing men from Britain and Europe.

Members of the Scottish Cold Case Unit at Glasgow Caledonian University.STV news
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“We know he had a chip in one of his front teeth and injuries to his nose and jaw that he sustained in the months leading up to his death.

“These injuries were not only untreated, but also caused him considerable pain. We also think he may have limped or had difficulty walking.”

He was found wearing a blue “Top Man” T-shirt with a maroon diagonal stripe down the front, a blue zip-up cardigan with a Greek Pennsylvania logo, light-colored jeans and black waterproof shoes typically purchased at a German discount supermarket.

A Nike messenger bag containing a number of personal items including toiletries, extra clothing, headphones, chargers, a lighter and cigarette papers were found near her body.

It is believed that he may have been dead for up to six months before he was found.

Personal items were found in a bag near the man's body.Glasgow Caledonian University

Professor Lesley McMillan, co-director of the unit, which is made up of forensics students and academic staff, said: “We hope that the information and images in our application will stick in someone’s memory.

“Perhaps someone will recognize his clothes or belongings and help identify him. The Cold Case Unit has spent the last 18 months gathering as much detail as possible to progress this case.

“We value our relationship with Police Scotland and thank our colleagues at the University of Dundee for their support with facial reconstruction and 3D imaging.

“We encourage anyone with information, no matter how small, that may be important to contact us.”

Dr. Maureen Taylor and Professor Leslie Macmillan.Glasgow Caledonian University

Police Scotland said the force was “extremely grateful” for the unit’s “hard work”.

Detective Inspector Kenny MacDonald, of the Greater Glasgow Division, said: “This has been a long-term investigation into the circumstances of the unidentified human remains and a detailed forensic examination of all physical items has been carried out.

“This involves going back to the recovery site, creating a recovery image of the face and liaising with the UK Missing Persons Unit.

“I hope this new image, supported by Glasgow Caledonian, will provide new leads to help identify the man and bring closure to any members of his family.”

Body of 'Balmore Man' found in woodland near Glasgow.Glasgow Caledonian University

What is a Scottish Cold Weather Unit?

The unit consists of a team of criminology students from Glasgow Caledonian University who work with Locate International to review and investigate missing and unidentified persons cold cases.

The device has been in operation for about 18 months and Balmore Man is one of its first cases.

Dr Taylor said: “It’s a really exciting development and we’ve been working on it for 18 months.

“We feel really invested in him now, and we want to get these new pictures and this information out to the public to help find this man’s name and help bring him home with any of his family.”

“Students put in a lot of effort and time – all on a voluntary basis, it’s not part of their course.

“We’ve seen them develop as investigators and their confidence grow — they’ve also really invested in the case and become really passionate about it.”

Visible injuries

In her book All That Remains, Professor Sue Black described the post-mortem in detail, describing how her kneecaps showed some evidence of articular degeneration.

The book also describes “Balmore Man’s” top left center tooth being broken in an incident that probably damaged the rest of his face, meaning a chip was visible every time he opened his mouth.

STV news

Reconstruction process

Dr Tobias Houlton, co-ordinator of the Forensic Art and Facial Anthropology course, said: ‘Reviewing this case and looking at the original scan files, I went through the whole process of reconstructing the face. solar standards.

“Thankfully, this is an old situation, so I didn’t feel like looking at an old reconstruction.

“I tried to do it blindly so I wouldn’t be affected, then I made a new updated surface – and went through the texturing process again with the information we had.

“Unlike most facial reconstructions, the scalp hair was preserved, so there is a suggestion of the hair style in which he was found in the final Balmore Man image.

“There’s also evidence of the clothing she was found with, which we’ve been able to incorporate into the recovery, so you get a general idea of ​​what she was wearing in her final moments.”

Anyone with information can email or call [email protected] 0141 331 3235. Full case details and a form which can be completed anonymously are available at https://locate.international/balmore-man-appeal-2023/. Or contact Police Scotland 101.