PITTSBURGH — A day after the body of a missing Duquesne University graduate student was found, the medical examiner said the cause and manner of the 23-year-old's death remains undetermined, pending toxicology results.
The medical examiner gave no time frame on Tuesday for when the tests would be completed but said it is not expected to be quickly.
Dakota James disappeared Jan. 25. He had last been seen in downtown Pittsburgh, and family members joined volunteers to search for him every weekend since he went missing. His body was pulled from the Ohio River on Monday.
James’ family held a press conference Tuesday afternoon to thank everyone who helped search for their son and vowed to help the city improve its safety features.
"We're going to work with the city to try to improve their surveillance video, particularly on the bridges. And we want to help improve response time and procedures for other missing people cases,” Jeff James’, Dakota James’ father, said.
Dakota James disappearance: Timeline of events
Earlier in the day, James’ mother, Pamela James, posted
She said her son Dakota “is now in the arms of God and those family members who have passed before us.” She said the Tuesday morning rain “was the many tears that were being shed over the loss of my sweet baby ….”
"As his mother I will never be able to express in words well enough how much I loved him. From his sweet little baby hands to the wonderful man he was becoming. People who did not have the opportunity to meet him, truly missed out," Pamela James said on Facebook.
“Thank you to all who have helped by searching, praying, hugging, sending condolences and even laughing during this very difficult time. I wish I could hug and personally thank each and every one of you myself. Just know that you have touched my life and I will forever be grateful.”
Pamela James said a memorial service for her son will be planned for a later date.
She ended the post by saying, “Dakota I love you so hard!”
Read the full post HERE.
- VIDEO: News conference on Dakota James
- VIDEO: Body found in Ohio River in Robinson Township
- VIDEO: Search volunteers react to discovery of Dakota James' body
- Search crews, volunteers spend weekend looking for Dakota James
- RAW: Crews search Ohio River in Beaver County for Dakota James
- City doing everything it can to find missing North Side man
- Police investigate kidnapping post about missing N. Side man, determine it's a hoax
- Family members offer reward for missing North Side man
Cox Media Group