A bizarre incident happened where a groundskeeper kept mowing around a dead body thinking it was a prop training dummy for police exercises. Meanwhile, 34-year-old Robert Owens’ family is frustrated with the police for not doing enough to find the real cause of the death of their loved one.
A North Carolina Groundskeeper Mowed Around A Dead Body Because He Thought It Was A Dummy
A disturbing incident reported when on Oct. 10, 34-year-old Robert Owens’ nearly naked body was found lying face down on the lawn of a China Grove, North Carolina home.
The man was seen last by his family two days before on Oct. 8 and during that time no one noticed the man's body including a groundskeeper who mowed around it, reportedly thinking it was a training dummy for police exercises.
Owen's family is now looking for answers as they want to know their loved one died, how he died, and how his body went unnoticed for so long. Why hadn’t his death been reported to the police sooner?
“Don’t know how you can do that,” Owens’ sister Haley Shue told local Queen City News. “Mow right beside someone and assume that they’re Halloween decorations at a house no one lives at.”
Not only this, but the mystery behind Owen's death holds some other sinister details including the fact that his body was found wearing little clothing, and it appeared he had not been shot. In fact, police don’t suspect foul play at all, although the investigation is still ongoing.
Owen had, the family admitted, been known to do drugs. It’s unclear at the present moment if this had anything to do with his death.
Still, in either case, Owens’ family is unsure of how he even ended up at the house.
“My grandmother has lived off of Shue Road for 40+ years,” Shue said, “and he’s never been to this house. He’s never known of this house this far off the road. He’s never been back here. He’s never been known to come here.”
Not only this, but it wasn't until Oct 10, the day after the groundskeeper mowed around Owens’ body, that a construction worker discovered the dead man.
As Shue told NBC News, the family said the construction worker said he found Owens “facedown in his underwear and socks with one arm under him, one arm out.” Owens also had “marks on his arms,” which the construction worker believed to be “defensive marks.”
“You can only think what’s running through our mind. He doesn’t have any of his clothes — where’s his clothes? Where’s his belongings? Where’s his wallet, his cellphone, shoes and all that?” she said.
Despite police not suspecting foul play, Owens’ family hasn’t ruled the possibility out. On a GoFundMe page dedicated to Owens, Haley Reavis wrote, “We have evidence that has been handed over to the detective. If you’re reading this and you were involved just now [sic] you will get what you deserve very soon.”
Last week an autopsy was conducted on Owen's body and evidence suggests no assault or trauma signs on Owen's body. But his family is upset and furious over the fact that no crime scene tape had been set up, and they felt that police had not properly preserved the crime scene.
It didn’t help to set their minds at ease when police were allegedly unwilling to share information with the family initially.
Shue said that police would not say where Owens’ body was found or what state he was in, just that he had not been shot. It wasn’t until the family found the construction worker who discovered Owens’ body that they gathered any information.
“There’s definitely some sort of foul play. We have been briefly told [by police] about some glass around his body. We don’t know if that glass is from a car or something else,” Shue said. “There’s no broken glass on the house.”
Police are yet to receive toxicology reports that will determine the real cause of death while Owen's family continues to struggle to come to terms with the sudden loss of their loved one.
“That’s something we have to live with, knowing no family ever identified him. No family got to say any final goodbyes to him. We just want to bring awareness to it,” Shue said. “We miss him dearly.”