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June 17, 2013

Police: Father and son dumped overdosed man’s body

By Brian Louwers
C & G Staff Writer

Police said a father and son left a man’s body in a field near Toepfer and Groesbeck earlier this month after he died of a suspected drug overdose at a home in Eastpointe.

According to Warren investigators, detectives acquired building security video footage that showed two men dumping the body of 45-year-old Jack Ralph Jackson in a field at Edom and Prospect.

“It clearly showed this pretty recognizable Hyundai with a driver and a passenger,” Warren Police Commissioner Jere Green said of the video. “The passenger got out. They opened the trunk. The driver got out. The two lifted the body that was wrapped in a sheet out of the trunk and basically threw the body to the side of the road.”

Jackson’s sister reportedly provided information about the suspect vehicle that led to a home on Grove in Eastpointe, where police executed a search warrant.

The 50-year-old homeowner was later interviewed by Warren police but denied knowledge of the alleged dumping.

Warren police later tracked the charcoal gray Hyundai allegedly used to transport Jackson’s body to a residence in Harrison Township, where the homeowner’s son, 22-year-old Jordan Hill Elias, was arrested June 14.

“The son implicated the father — said the guy died at his dad’s house on Grove and that he helped his dad dump the body,” Detective Sgt. Stephen Mills said.

Elias was arraigned in the 37th District Court June 17 on one count of removing a dead body without the medical examiner’s permission, a one-year misdemeanor. Bond was set at $25,000 cash or surety and Elias requested court-appointed legal counsel at his arraignment.

Mills said the homeowner was released after detectives interviewed him but that he is now wanted by the Warren Police Department on the same charge his son faces. 

A property owner reportedly found Jackson’s body at about 2 p.m. June 11. Police said he had been dead for less than 24 hours when his body was found.

Mills said Jackson had Florida identification on him but that it appeared he had been homeless and staying temporarily at several places, including the suspect’s Eastpointe home.

Toxicology results were not available June 17 and police could not yet say what drugs caused the suspected overdose.

Regardless of how Jackson lived and died, Green said the apparent callousness of those who allegedly dumped Jackson’s body on the side of the road left him with no sympathy in respect to criminal charges.

“There’s an element of human decency that you’ve got to look at in this whole thing,” Green said. “Regardless if it’s a drug addict, or a homeless person, or an alcoholic, they’re still people. To me, it’s disturbing.”

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Brian Louwers at brianlouwers@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1089.