Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Round Lake Park woman found dead

A 34-year-old Round Lake Park (Ill.) woman, Melissa Best, missing since April 15, was found dead early Monday evening in Grayslake, Ill. Best went missing on Friday, April 15, after dropping off one of her children at a friend’s house.

In a news conference held this morning at the Round Lake Park Police Department, Chief George Filenko, flanked by two detectives and Mayor Jean McCue, gave a candid and informative accounting of the past week’s investigation. Best is believed to have driven herself to Waukegan, where she may have died within 4-5 hours of dropping off her child. Her body was then driven in her own van to Grayslake, and the van was left in the parking lot of the Gray’s Point Studios, at the corner of Routes 120 and 45. The van remained parked there until it was found yesterday about 6:50PM.

She was previously considered a missing person, and the case is now a death investigation. Active detective work, including follow-ups to Facebook leads, resulted in the finding of the van and Best’s body. It is believed that she died on Friday, April 15. Initial presumptive blood tests indicate the presence of opiates in her body, but the Chief would not speculate on the type of drugs. Their investigation revealed a history of alcohol abuse.

Two “persons of interest”, not yet classified as suspects, have been identified and have been interviewed. The Round Lake Park P.D. is in communication with the Lake County State’s Attorney about the possibility of charges under a new Illinois statute that pertains to concealment of a body, which is a Class 4 Felony. The two POIs were known to Best. It appears the Grayslake apartment parking lot was chosen at random.

Best and her husband, Clint, had known one another since age 15 and were married for 18 years.

The PD parking lot was full of press vehicles. Remote broadcasting vans were there from CBS-2, WGN-9, Fox, and ABC-7. Portions of the press conference were carried live. Chief Filenko made a short opening statement and then answered many questions from reporters.

No comments: