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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

From the desk of Bates County Coroner Greg Mullinax

On November 3, 2020 I was called by the Bates County Sheriff to a field in rural southwestern Bates County. A person farming in the area had located possible human remains. I responded to the scene and observed skeletal remains. 

As skeletal remains require special treatment for investigation, I contacted the Forensic Anthropology Recovery Unit at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas to respond to the secure scene. The forensic anthropologist and recovery team arrived a short time later and worked late into the night securing and preserving the remains. 

Dental specimens were examined and dental records were obtained by the Bates County Sheriff regarding a possible missing person in the area. The Sheriff and I were present as the forensic dentist performed the analysis and confirmed the remains were that of Nicole Shalee Mallatt, the referenced missing person.

Ms. Mallatt’s remains were then transferred to Washburn University in Topeka for complete anthropologic examination. The remains were processed and examined and I was kept updated through each step of the process.

Additionally, I requested the remains to be examined also at the University of Nebraska Forensic Anthropology Unit.  From November 3 to present day, I have worked with forensic pathologists, toxicologists, anthropologists, and other experts to be positively certain that I have attempted every possible avenue to obtain needed information. As of today’s date, I am satisfied that everything which can be learned from Ms. Mallatt’s remains has been accomplished. The final results of these studies are pending to the ongoing investigation, so I cannot publicly share those results at this time.

With this work complete, I have determined that Ms. Mallatt should finally be laid to rest according to the wishes of her family, who has spent the past months without the closure of a final resting place. I have therefore released Ms. Mallatt’s remains to her next-of-kin as provided by law. Even though remains are released, the case remains open and I continue to work with the ongoing law enforcement investigation. 


Greg Mullinax
Bates County Coroner