MARIN CO. (KRON) — A DNA analysis of bones found at the Point Reyes National Seashore confirm they are those of a graduate student at the University of California at Berkeley who disappeared in January, according to the Marin County coroner’s office.
On April 20, hikers found the bones of 22-year-old Shuqin Zhang at the base of a cliff but did not report finding the bones until three days later.
The hiker found the bones two miles south of the Visitor Center at Drakes Beach, where Zhang’s vehicle, a 2012 Mercedes-Benz, was found parked near the lighthouse on January 9.
Coroner’s officials then went to the scene and found a connected section of the mid and lower spine and sacrum, according to Chief Deputy Coroner Darrell Harris.
On April 29, coroner’s officials found the end of a femur in the sand. Both sets of bones were sent to forensic labs for DNA analysis.
On July 13, positive identification was made using DNA comparisons with Zhang’s family members, Harris said.
The cause and manner of Zhang’s death are undetermined but Berkeley police, who investigated her disappearance, do not suspect foul play.
Zhang was last seen on January 7 at 1:30 a.m. and she may have left for Bodega Bay at 3:40 a.m., according to Berkeley police. Zhang was scheduled to leave for China that morning but she did not board her flight, police said.
Berkeley police said Zhang was depressed and at risk when she disappeared.
Bay City News contributed to this report.