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Published: Friday, February 01, 2019 @ 5:07 PM
Updated: Friday, February 01, 2019 @ 5:26 PM
DAYTON — For 10 minutes Wednesday night, a North Carolina woman tried to convince a dispatcher that she believed her grandmother was wrapped in plastic in a tub and in the basement of a Dayton residence.
“I’ve already called before, and they thought I was crazy when I called,” Megan Lauhon told a dispatcher that night.
Lauhon later told this news organization she was relieved when a Dayton police detective worked to locate remains of a woman in the basement of a home on Virginia Avenue. Police on Friday said the owner of the home didn’t know about the body.
“The detective, the second time that I called, followed through and went above and beyond and found my grandmother,” Lauhon said. “I’m glad she will be brought to peace.”
The Montgomery County Coroner’s Office has not released an official identification nor a cause or manner of death for the woman that Lauhon said was her elderly grandmother.
According to the coroner’s office, the remains are that of a person who has been deceased and in a plastic Rubbermaid tub for an extended period of time.
A statement from Dayton police said officers responded to a call from an out-of-state family member requesting a welfare check for her elderly grandmother.
“Dayton Police officers began a diligent search to try to locate the grandmother,” the statement reads. “This search was exhaustive, with officers utilizing police records to identify multiple locations. The search culminated at an address on Virginia Avenue where officers made contact with the current resident.
“The resident readily cooperated with officers and allowed them to search the structure. Inside the home, officers located the hidden remains of a female, believed to be the woman they were looking for. We have no reason to believe the current resident was aware the remains were in the home.”
The statement said the final results of an autopsy likely will take weeks. Dayton police have urged anyone with information to call the Dayton Police Department or remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at (937) 222-STOP.
County regional dispatch records indicate Dayton police were dispatched about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday to the Virginia Avenue address on a welfare check.
“That’s where my grandmother is in the cooler in the basement,” Lauhon told police, adding that no one has heard from her grandmother in about three years but that she received tips in the past three months.
Lauhon also told police she believed someone was collecting her grandmother’s Social Security benefits and that her grandmother had once lived on Mapleview Avenue.
“So if she’s not there, then that should be a red flag thrown up real quick,” Lauhon told the dispatcher. “That’s fraud, federal fraud for Social Security benefits.”
The police report filed at 4:42 a.m. Thursday listed several possible witnesses.
“I just wish I could have done something before,” Lauhon said. “I’m trying to maintain and keep it together.”
Lauhon said her grandmother was a “good, Christian woman and she didn’t deserve this … She was one of a kind.”