Meridian Star

September 21, 2013

Found body believed to be missing man

By Ida Brown / ibrown@themeridianstar.com
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN —     A body found Friday in an old abandoned shed is believed to be a man reported as missing earlier that day by the Meridian Police Department.

    Police reported that William Douglas Williams, 51, had been last seen Sept. 14. According to Lauderdale County Coroner Clayton Cobler, the body found in the shed located on 40th Avenue and Railroad Street is believed to be Williams. Although Williams was reported as last seen a few days ago, Cobler said the body in the shed had been dead for three weeks. The coroner affirmed that it is Williams.

    "His driver's license and wallet was in there, so we're 99 percent sure that it is him," Cobler said.

    The police report described Williams as a black male, 6'2, 145 pounds, wearing a blue & white short shirt, faded blue jeans, a camouflage hat and gray sneakers.

    "The gray sneakers were in a corner of the shed," Cobler said.

    According to the coroner, family members said Williams stayed at the residence and had gone there to see if he was there. A strong odor in the area lead them to call the police.

    "He had a little lean-to set up inside that he laid in and other items," Cobler said.

    The body was moved to the county morgue and will be transported to Jackson for autopsy to determine cause of death and to verify that it is Williams.

    "We're going to do a DNA study. His mother was on the scene, so I went ahead and got a cheek swab from her," Cobler said. "The lab will get samples from the body."