Head Scratcher

Sometimes a news story will truly have you scratching your head.  This story about a man in Burlington who disappeared in early May but was just discovered in his shed this week is one of those:

The death of the 57-year-old man is being investigated, but police say it appears to be a suicide. He was found in the shed, where he apparently hanged himself. The shed is located in the middle of a dog lot, said Burlington Police Assistant Chief Chris Verdeck…

The man's wife reported her husband missing to police May 4. She last saw him around 1:45 p.m. on April 29 at their home.

"He had a history of being gone for weeks on end. I guess she figured he was gone and was going to come back," said Verdeck, explaining the wife's delay in reporting her husband missing.

A patrol officer who took the initial report searched the house, including the basement, but he didn't search the shed in the back yard. The detective who followed up also didn't search the shed. A detective went back to the home Tuesday after the wife went to the police department to talk about the case. During the conversation, she mentioned that she didn't think anyone had looked in the storage shed, said Burlington police Capt. Steve Smith.

Police went back out to the property and found the man's body in the shed. It appears he had been dead for awhile. The medical examiner was contacted and the man's body was taken to the state Medical Examiner's office in Chapel Hill for an autopsy, Verdeck said.

Later in the story we learn that the shed is part of a dog lot and that the police had to call animal control to handle the dog so they could search the shed.  Apparently the wife fed the dog all this time, but otherwise didn't deal with it and thus didn't go into the shed herself to look for her husband. 

One of my recurring bad dreams is that I am injured/stranded in some way and no one notices.  The idea that my wife wouldn't find a way to search all of our property for me, even before calling the police, just gives me the creeps.

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