Man Whose Body Found Under Stairway – 8 Months After He Disappeared – Committed Suicide

An Illinois man found dead in a closet in his home eight months after he was reported missing died by suicide, a coroner’s report says.

Jennifer Maedge reported her husband missing on April 27, 2022, as CrimeOnline previously reported. Although police searched the home several times, his body wasn’t found until December 11, when Jennifer Maedge looked in a closet tucked beneath the stairs in the home.

The body of Richard Maedge, 53, was behind some clothes in the crowded closet. His wife said at the time he died from suicide, and last week Madison County Coroner Steve Nonn confirmed that, KTVI reported.

Kelly Rogers, the county’s deputy chief coroner, couldn’t say for certain why it took so long to discover the body, but she described the Maedge residence as a “hoarder home.”

Police notice a “sewer-like” smell during their initial search for Maedge. When Jennifer Maedge called police a second time to report an odor, officers searched again and found nothing, but noted the smell hadn’t changed.

Jennifer Maedge contacted a plumber, who thought the odor was sewer gas. He capped a sewer pipe in the basement, which seemed to stop the odor.

Rogers said that Maedge’s body had mummified inside the closet, meaning the fluids had dried up. A body in such a state may not have a strong odor, she said.

The autopsy showed that Maedge had no further injuries. Jennifer Maedge said at the time that she found the body while searching for a Christmas decorations box that he died from a suicide and that the odor was “never overpowering.”

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[Featured image: Richard Maedge/Facebook]