Human bones found inside a submerged car near the Georgia-Alabama state line in 2021 have been matched to a college student who had been missing for 47 years, according to a Chambers County Sheriff’s Department.
Kyle Clinkscales, 22, of LaGrange, vanished in January 1976 after leaving the Georgia club where he worked as a bartender to return to school at Auburn University in neighboring Alabama.
On the night of January 27, 1976, 22-year-old, Kyle Wade Clinkscales left LaGrange to travel back to Auburn University where he was a student. However, he never arrived and neither he nor his white two-door 1974 Pinto Runabout was ever found.
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On December 7th, 2021, around 11:20 AM deputies with the Chambers County Sheriff’s Office were notified of what appeared to be a car submerged in a creek off of County Road 83 approximately 1 mile from County Road 388.
Once they arrived on the scene, they recovered the car from the water and it appeared to be an older model Ford passenger car with a 1976 Georgia tag with a Troup County decal.
Chambers County contacted the Troup County Sheriff’s Office for assistance in trying to run the tag information. The Troup County tag office was contacted and investigators in our criminal investigations division began to check for any records we may have had.
After verifying information, it was found that the tag and VIN matched that of a 1974 Ford Pinto Runabout which was the same car that Kyle Clinkscales was last seen driving on the night of January 27th, 1976.
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The 1974 Ford Pinto was transported to the Troup County Sheriff’s Office and was processed by Investigators with the Troup County Sheriff’s Office and Agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI). The personal belongings of Kyle Clinkscales along with skeletal remains were recovered and those remains were sent to the GBI Crime Lab for further examination.
On February 19, 2023, the Troup County Sheriff’s Office was notified by the Troup County Coroner’s Office that those remains were positively identified as that of Kyle Clinkscales.
“At this time an official report has not been completed or released by the GBI as it relates to a manner of death,” according to the sheriff’s statement.
GBI spokesperson Nelly Miles confirmed Wednesday that investigators have not determined how Clinkscales died or whether foul play was involved.
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