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Philadelphia man identified in decades-old cold case, Pennsylvania State Police, Lancaster County DA's Office say

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A Lancaster County cold case from 1991 has some deep roots in Philadelphia. 

Pennsylvania State Police, Troop J, Lancaster Station and the Lancaster District Attorney's Office are asking the public for any information regarding the death of Derek Michael Mason of Philadelphia. 

Mason, also known as Hawkeye and Hawk, was killed in 1991. Still, his body wasn't discovered until Jan. 21, 1992, when PSP investigators said they found his remains along the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Clay Township. 

Pennsylvania State Police

However, officials didn't connect the remains to Mason until December 2023 after PSP and the Lancaster DA's Office received results from the DNA database, Forensic Genetic Genealogy. 

Previously, investigators sent bone samples to Othram Labs in Texas for DNA testing, while a PSP analyst researched, and later interviewed potential family members. Through additional DNA tests and interviews with family members, analysts were able to connect the remains to Mason.

While Mason's remains were found in Lancaster County in 1992, he was last seen leaving his home on the 500 block of South 39th Street in West Philly back in October 1991. 

Pennsylvania State Police

A $2,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest in the cold case. 

Investigators are asking anyone with information related to Mason's death to contact PSP Lancaster Trooper Brian McNally at 717-290-1967. 

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