The Will County coroner on Thursday said results are inconclusive from an autopsy performed on human remains found along the Des Plaines River a day ago, and speculation runs high as investigators try to determine the identity.
Coroner Patrick O'Neil said in a news release that his office is unable to conclude the identity, race or sex of the skeletal remains. O'Neil said an expedited DNA analysis by the Illinois State Police Forensic Crime Laboratory will likely take about two weeks.
Illinois State Police Sgt. Tom Burek wouldn't speculate if the remains belong to Stacy Peterson or Lisa Stebic, two missing Will County women whose cases have drawn national attention.
Members of a cleanup crew found the remains Wednesday afternoon while clearing debris from the south shore. There wasn't much of the person left -- just a ribcage, spinal column and thigh bones. O'Neil said shreds of blue jeans and a small amount of cash were found with the remains.
The cleanup crew made their grisly find approximately three-quarters of a mile west of the Interstate 55 bridge, near the Big Basin Marina.
Relatives of missing Bolingbrook mother Stacy Peterson said they were contacted by state police, who told them a woman's body had been found in the river near Channahon, though the remains have not been identified.
"We don't know who it is," said Pam Bosco, a spokeswoman for Stacy Peterson's family. "We're just being patient right now. We're waiting."
Peterson's husband, Drew Peterson, is charged with killing his third wife, Kathleen Savio. He contends his fourth wife, Stacy Peterson, left him for another man when she disappeared in October 2007 and is most likely living outside Illinois.
Bosco said relatives realize the remains could be those of another woman, possibly missing Plainfield resident Lisa Stebic or someone else.
"It could be Lisa, it could be Stacy, it could be someone different," Melanie Greenberg, Stebic's cousin, told the Sun-Times.
Bosco said Stacy Peterson's family members just hope the remains can be identified so a family somewhere can learn the fate of a missing loved one.
"We just hope they can identify who it is," Bosco said.