APD working homicide investigation
By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Atmore police are conducting a homicide investigation after officers responding to a burglary call discovered a “badly decomposing body” in a Jones Street mobile home.
“Basically, what we have is a death investigation, but we are working it as a homicide,” Police Chief Chuck Brooks said this week. “Our investigators have been actively working it as a homicide since the body was discovered on March 26.”
According to a press release issued Monday by Brooks, the grim discovery was made after officers responded to a telephoned report of a “burglary in progress” at the water-stained, single-wide mobile home with rotten steps and porch, along with the remains of a rotted wheelchair ramp.
Patrol officers who were dispatched to the address immediately surrounded the trailer and noted that it had been forcefully entered.
“Officers entered the home and began doing a room-by-room search for any violators,” said Brooks. “In one of the bedrooms they found a badly decomposing body, believed to be a female, that looked like it had been there quite a time, probably a couple of months.”
The remains have been sent to the state crime lab for an autopsy, as is the protocol in all unaccompanied or suspicious deaths. The police chief would neither confirm nor deny reports from a relative that the victim is 25-year-old
VanDora Latasha Dailey until forensic scientists have verified the reports.
“The name of the female is not being released until positive identification is confirmed by the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences,” Brooks said.
Friends of McDaniel posted on various Facebook pages that the woman, who reportedly had a mental disorder and suffered from at least two debilitating medical conditions, was living with relatives in Monroeville until another relative brought her to Atmore about a year ago.
Brooks did confirm that APD detectives have determined that electricity, water and other utilities to the trailer had been shut off, though he did not say how long ago that happened.
He said police have no suspects at this time, but more information could be forthcoming as the investigation continues.
“There is a lot of follow-up work to be done,” he said. “We are actively investigating the case, and a lot of witnesses are being interviewed.”