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Body found in county
Autopsy will determine if remains are missing man
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
By BULLETIN STAFF REPORTS -
A body was recovered Sunday night in the Laurel Park/Chatmoss area, not far from the home of a 23-year-old man who was reported missing June 7, according to Henry County Sheriff’s Capt. Ricky Walker.
The remains were sent to the state medical examiner’s office in Roanoke for identification, Walker said. He added that investigators expect DNA testing might be required to identify the body, which had begun to decompose.
Conclusive results of those tests probably will not be available soon, Walker added.
There were no signs of foul play at the scene, he said. He declined to comment on whether there were any signs of what led to the person’s death.
A neighbor called police to report the body, which was found around 5:45 p.m. Sunday “very close” to the home of Martavious Dapree Mease, Walker said.
Mease’s family reported him missing June 7. According to previous reports, he last was seen walking away from his home on Yeatts Court in the Laurel Park/Chatmoss area.
Later Monday evening, Hairston Funeral Home in Martinsville issued a death notice for Mease.
Informed of the death notice by a reporter, Walker said the sheriff’s office is waiting for official identification from the medical examiner before it draws any conclusions in the case.
“We can’t make any other statement until we get an identification,” he said.
Last week, Mease’s mother, Loresa Hunter, said Mease has depression and schizophrenia, a mental disorder that makes it hard to distinguish what is real and what is not. Hunter said Mease sometimes gets mad, walks off, calms down and then returns home.
In the past, he never was gone more than a couple of days, according to previous reports.
Hunter said Monday that her recent experiences in dealing with her son’s disappearance and waiting to hear the medical examiner’s findings have been “just like a nightmare.”
She expressed hope that the body is not her son’s and said she just wants him to come home.
Walker said Mease officially still is considered a missing person, and the case remains under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call the Henry County Sheriff’s Office at 638-8751 or Crimestoppers at 63-CRIME (632-7463).