Barron County remains found in 2017 identified

Relating to a homicide that happened in December 2017 in Barron County,  a second victim has been identified using genetic genealogy as of Tuesday.

Working in conjunction with the Wisconsin Department of Justice, the DNA Doe Project has identified the remains recovered from a wooded area south of Barron, Wisconsin, as Gary Albert Herbst. He was believed to be a homicide victim based on evidence of a gunshot wound to the head, according to a news release.

The Wisconsin Department of Justice contacted the DNA Doe Project in January 2019 for assistance in identifying the unknown man. Following sequencing of the DNA in late 2019, advanced bioinformatics ultimately resulted in a usable file that could be uploaded to

Research by DNA Doe Project volunteer genetic genealogists began on Feb. 25, 2020. In less than two days, team leaders contacted an agent with the Wisconsin Department of Justice to offer a likely identity for the man. A DNA sample from a close relative confirmed the identity of Herbst.