Just in time for Halloween, a tale of a brother-in-law and his dog. Mike Bender is not only my wife’s brother he’s also one of my closet friends. Mike has a Sprint store in Whiting, Indiana along Indianapolis Blvd about a mile from the Chicago city line. Recently buildings on either side of his store have been razed leaving only empty lots. Mike and Kim Mikulski and their two year old Rottweiler Brutus live in an apartment above the store. Brutus has enjoyed the empty lots but favored one over the other. One day a couple of weeks ago Brutus came into the store with something in his mouth. Reluctantly, he gave it up. Mike said it looked like muddy chicken bones...until he saw the ring.
Mike took Brutus outside to his favorite vacant lot and asked the dog, “Where's your bone?” Brutus started working an area in the dirt lot and shortly unearthed a corner of a plastic sheet. After calling Brutus back, Mike peeled away the plastic and found the probable owner of the ring...
Mike called the authorities who quickly verified the remains as human (the cops said they get lots of calls about found bones but they almost always turn out to be animal rather than human. Of course, the smiling face above pretty much makes this one a slam dunk). It was decided to call in an anthropologist to study the site but it would take a little time to make arrangements. So here was the view from Mike and Kim’s bathroom window for a few days -
After the anthropologist finished, Lake County Forensics moved in –
Some of the remains were believed to be scattered by heavy equipment when the building, an old bait and tackle shop, was torn down, that's the reason for the number of randomly scattered flags.
Or is there another explanation? Is there more than one body? We won’t know until tests are complete and that could take months. Unlike TV, it won't be solved in an hour in a lab lit like a cocktail lounge.
The story made all of the Chicago news outlets and was a top story of the day. The following morning, Mike and Brutus came downstairs to open the store and noticed a crowd of people outside the door waiting. Mike figured he had a busy cell phone morning ahead but the crowd was actually there to see Brutus!
What happened to the poor soul found wrapped in a plastic sheet in the mud? Who is it? Is there a family still searching for anwers of someone suddenly lost? Who dug the shallow grave in the crawlspace of Great Lakes Bait and Tackle who knows when? What’s underneath your neighbor’s house? Are you sure?