Nevada County authorities say bones found near Lake Spaulding belong to Ruendi Ibarra, 26, of Stockton |

Nevada County authorities say bones found near Lake Spaulding belong to Ruendi Ibarra, 26, of Stockton

Nevada County authorities have identified bones found over Memorial Day weekend near Lake Spaulding as belonging to Ruendi Ibarra, 26, of Stockton.

Ibarra died sometime after fleeing a Dec. 22 wreck at Interstate 80 and Highway 20. Forensic testing of bones found near the lake revealed Ibarra’s identity, authorities said.

Ibarra’s cause of death is undetermined. The manner of death is classified as accidental, said Sgt. Mike Sullivan, county coroner.

Authorities say Ibarra disappeared after he ran from the crash scene, jumping over a traffic barrier and running in the direction of Lake Spaulding.

“Basically, the family didn’t report him missing because they thought he was going to come home,” said Sgt. Mike Sullivan, county coroner.

The Stockton Police Department forwarded the missing person report to Nevada County authorities after receiving it weeks later. However, local authorities couldn’t deploy search-and-rescue volunteers because of heavy winter snow, Sullivan said.

A hiker then found bones in late May near Lake Spaulding. Authorities also discovered clothes nearby that matched a description of Ibarra’s clothing, the sergeant added.

Deputies then sent the bones for forensic testing to determine a link.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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