Students create faces for skulls to help unsolved crime victims

TRIBECA, Manhattan (WABC) -- During one week each winter, there's a basement classroom full of skulls at the New York Academy of Art in Tribeca.

Here, students work diligently to put a face on each skull. The skulls are actually 3-D plaster prints, but they are copies of real skulls.

Many of the skulls belong to victims of unsolved crimes and were sitting in evidence rooms.

In this year's week-long session, some skulls belong to men or women who died crossing the border from Mexico into Arizona.

The class is taught by Joe Mullins, who is a forensic artist from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

His idea was to work with these talented students to help solve some of these crimes or answers questions for families with missing relatives.

Turns out the skull, even without skins, eyes, ears or lips, has information about how all those facial features once looked.

The finished skulls will be on display at the New York Academy of Art March 1 to March 29 from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

* More Manhattan news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
Copyright © 2021 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.