Remains of UC professor ID'd months after suspected murder - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Remains of UC professor ID'd months after suspected murder

Randall Russ (Photo courtesy of Kate Russ) Randall Russ (Photo courtesy of Kate Russ)
Charles Black and Kevin Howard (FOX19 File Photo) Charles Black and Kevin Howard (FOX19 File Photo)
FLEMINGSBURG (FOX19) - Remains found in Fleming County have been positively identified as Randall Russ five months after his suspected murder according to Russ' family.

Charles Black, one of the men charged with Russ's murder led police to remains back in September.

Since then, Russ's family has waited for a positive identification while the remains sat in a Kentucky morgue.

"We got the positive ID on Thursday night at about 7:30, 8 o'clock,” said Connie Fetters, Russ' sister.

For 91 days, Randall Russ's family has waited to hear those words. After months of working to obtain dental records or fingerprints from Veteran's Affairs, Fetters says a coroner was finally able to identify remains found near a creek in Fleming County as Randall Russ.

"It's kind of like a bittersweet moment. That's the best way I can describe it. I thought I would be a lot happier that we got the dental records but it's more, now everything is real,” said Russ' daughter Katie.

Russ disappeared from his Dry Ridge home in August. 

Weeks later, a suspect Charles Black was arrested. He took Kentucky State Troopers to a shallow grave in where he claimed he helped bury the remains of Randall Russ. Black claimed Russ came to his home to help him move. While he was there Black told police another man named Kevin Howard asked Black to go to a neighbor's home. When Black returned Russ was bound, gagged and beaten to death.

Last month, Kevin Howard and Charles Black pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, kidnapping and robbery.

"It's a different kind of hurt now than it was at the very beginning. It's been 5 months waiting,” said Fetters.

Now, with a positive identification, Russ's family is planning a celebration of life service hoping to give him the proper burial he deserves

"It just really was hard but I just want to say thank you to every single person that helped us through this past five months. It's been hard but he will be able to be put to rest now,” said Fetters.

Russ's family hopes to have his service sometime in February just days after Howard and Black's next court appearance on February 6th.

The family has asked for donations to help with Russ' funeral expenses. You can donate by visiting: http://bit.ly/1xJfeGJ

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