True Crime News Roundup: Elderly Man Missing For Months Found Dead In Trash Can Outside His Home

Plus: NYC sixth-grader struck and killed by stray bullet; New Hampshire police search for person of interest in double homicide; Fyre Festival fraudster released early from prison; and manhunt continues for escaped Texas prisoner.

May 20, 2022
The body Walter Dansby, 76, was found on May 17 in a trash can in his yard.

Family of Walter Dansby, 76, reported him missing in January. On May 17, the victim’s neighbor reported smelling “an off odor,” and responding officers found Dansby wrapped in a blanket in a trash can in his backyard.

Photo by: Detroit Police Department

Detroit Police Department

By: Aaron Rasmussen

A man who vanished in January was found in a trash container outside his Michigan home.

The body of an elderly Michigan man who was last seen alive last winter was recently discovered in a backyard trash can outside his home, authorities said.

According to WJBK, family of Walter Dansby, 76, reported him missing to Detroit police in late January and officers who checked his residence at the time were unable to locate him.

Around four months later, on May 17, the victim’s neighbor reported smelling “an off odor,” and responding officers found Dansby “wrapped in a blanket in the large container in the rear of the location,” Police Chief Marlon Wilson said.

Law enforcement officials have not publicly named any suspects or persons of interest in the case or said how Dansby may have died.

“Right now, we are asking the community to provide us with any information,” Wilson said of the ongoing investigation, noting that “the smallest bit of information they might think won't help could lead to something bigger.”

An 11-year-old girl was struck and killed by a stray bullet in New York City.

On May 16, Kyhara Tay was walking on a street in the Bronx with family members when a person who was the passenger on a scooter shot at a group of men, the NYPD said.

Tay was hit by a stray bullet from half a block away, and the sixth-grader managed to flee into a nearby nail salon.

“She came running in the store and kept rubbing her stomach and saying, ‘Ow, ow,’” eyewitness Maya Jones told WPIX-TV.

A second witness, Yuberkis Pena, attempted to help Tay.

“When I opened her clothes and I see her bleeding, I see she got shot. I see the hole,” Pena told WCBS-TV. “I told the lady in the nail salon, give me napkins, give me [a] glove, give me something.”

Tay was rushed to an area hospital, where she died.

Citing sources, WNBC reported at least one suspect, believed to be a 14- or 15-year-old, was in custody as of May 20.

Family told WPIX-TV the young victim “was real outgoing, adventurous, willing to try new things, just like a bundle of joy.”

Police in New Hampshire search for a person of interest in an unsolved double homicide.

Authorities have released a sketch of a person of interest in the death of a New Hampshire couple who were fatally shot while out for a hike.

According to police, the man they are looking for was spotted in the area where the bodies of former international aid workers Stephen Reid, 67, and Djeswende Reid, 66, were found near their Concord home on April 21.

The man in the sketch is a brown-haired white man who is around 5’ 10” tall with a medium build and believed to be in his 20s or 30s, police said, according to The Daily Beast. He was dressed in a dark blue jacket, khaki pants, and had a black backpack with him.

Officials are offering a $33,500 reward in connection to the person of interest, and anyone with information about the man is requested to call the Concord Police Department at (603) 225-8600, the Concord Regional Crimeline at (603) 226-3100, or submit a tip online.

Fyre Festival fraudster Billy McFarland is released from prison early.

The man who organized what was billed to be an epic series of concerts in the Bahamas in 2017 but turned into a fraudulent fiasco was recently released from a federal prison early.

In October 2018, Billy McFarland, 30, was sentenced to six years behind bars — and expected to serve three and a half years — after he pleaded guilty to bilking investors out of $26 million and scamming ticket holders, hundreds of whom were left stranded on the island Exuma without basic necessities, including adequate food and water.

The admitted fraudster’s attorney, Jason Russo, told USA TODAY his client is currently “serving the remainder of his time in a halfway house in the New York City area” and “it’s anticipated that he will be there for approximately six months.”

According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, McFarland was eligible to be let out of prison early due to the First Step Act Release, which “allows inmates to earn increased good conduct time,” and “expands opportunities for inmate placement into residential reentry centers or home confinement.”

A prisoner in Texas escapes from a prison bus and flees officers.

A manhunt involving hundreds of law enforcement officers continues in Leon County, Texas, for an escaped convicted killer, who, surveillance photos show, managed to get free of his shackles on a prison bus and attack the driver before escaping, authorities said.

NBC News reported that on May 12, Gonzalo Lopez, 46, cut through a metal barrier and crawled under a cage. He then stabbed the driver in the hand, and the two got into a physical altercation that spilled outside the bus, according to officials.

Lopez managed to reboard the bus and drive off. The vehicle, however, swerved off the highway and crashed when officers shot out a rear tire, but the prisoner managed to flee on foot into the woods.

“He’s crafty,” Texas Department of Criminal Justice spokesman Robert Hurst said, KHOU reported. “He’s done this before down in South Texas in Webb County. He hid out for almost nine days.”

Police are offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the capture of Lopez, who was serving a life sentence for murder and attempted murder.

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