News Release: CROWN POINT -- Coroner Merrilee D. Frey is grateful to the general public for their help in locating family members and providing information to assist in identifying decedents. Coroner Frey states, “Sadly, as of September 15, 2012, we had a total of eleven unidentified decedents in our facility. Seven have now been identified through DNA, as our Forensic Anthropologist and I have worked closely together on these cases. They have been returned to their loved ones. The oldest case dates back to 2007. All but one are now at rest and reunited with family members. Thank you for responding to our call for assistance to the general public. I am committed to resolving all of our unidentified cases.”
Recently, the Coroner’s office asked the general public for assistance in helping to locate family members for Vincent Demus. Within twenty-four hours we brought closure for his family. The general public was also instrumental in helping the Coroner’s office identify Sherell Clark, who had been missing for several months, bringing closure to her family members. Additionally, the general public was crucial in the bringing closure to the family members of Amy Ellington, a thirty-nine year old female who had been missing for several months.
In early 2012, Derrien Picket was discovered in Lake Station. He had been missing for one year. George Deliopoulos, Meidco/Legal Death Investigator on this case and a twenty-three year veteran of the Coroner’s Office states, ”Our team of professionals worked closely with family members to provide DNA which ultimately led to positive identification of Mr. Picket. Dr. Nawrocki, our Forensic Anthropologist, worked closely with the Coroner, to help the Picket family put the final piece of the puzzle together regarding his death. Coroner Frey’s leadership motivates us to further investigate open cases to help hurting families. ”
“Coroner Frey states,”The generous help of the citizens of Northwest Indiana has allowed families closure regarding their missing loved ones. It is the mission of our office to serve and support our families with the tragic loss of their loved ones.”