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UPDATE: Body found during welfare check identified


Tuesday update

     An autopsy has confirmed that the body found behind a Tabor City home Saturday night was the homeowner, Maj. Greg Sibbett of the Tabor City Police Department said Tuesday.

     Grover Steadman Elleby, who lived at the home, apparently died just beyond the steps to his back door at least a week before he was found, Sibbett said.

     That autopsy, still incomplete, found no indication of “foul play,” Sibbett said, though the case remains open until medical lab reports are returned.

     Look for more on this story in tomorrow’s Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.

Monday post

     A worried restaurant owner prompted a welfare check that led to the discovery of a body behind a West 2nd Street home Saturday night, a Tabor City Police Department report said.

     Positive identification of the body, and the cause of death, is not expected to be determined until later this week at the earliest, Maj. Greg Sibbett said Sunday. Crime Scene Unit investigators from the State Bureau of Investigation responded to the home, the SBI taking charge of the investigation, both Sibbett and the report by Officer Stephen Conner said.

     An owner of Coleman’s Drive In asked Conner to check on the welfare of Grover Steadman Elleby Saturday evening, noting that the frequent customer had not been by in several days.

     Arriving at the house at about 9 p.m., Conner found the front door locked, checked down both sides of the home, then discovered a “rotten” smell at the rear of the house, the body and personal belongings “laying in front of the back porch step,” the report said.

     Among the belongings was a prosthetic leg, in the grass beside the body.

     No one was inside the home, and Elleby’s vehicle was parked beside the house, the report said.

     An autopsy was to be conducted at the Office of the State Medical Examiner in Raleigh this week, Sibbett said.

     Look for more on this story in this week’s Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.