EDWARDSVILLE — A Cottage Hills man was charged Thursday, Oct. 23, in Madison County Circuit Court with a felony charge of abuse of a corpse.
The charges against Willie M. Jenkins Jr., 34, of the 100 block of West Drive, stem from a missing person report taken by the Madison County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday, Oct. 21. The missing person was identified as Adam J. Sneed, 28, of the 1400 block of Sixth Street, Cottage Hills.
A family member told sheriff’s deputies that Sneed had not been to work, or seen by his friends or family, since Friday, Oct. 17. Later that day, the sheriff’s office received information from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and St. Louis Medical Examiner’s Office that Sneed was found deceased in St. Louis on Saturday, Oct. 18.
St. Louis investigators told Madison County Sheriff’s Office investigators that Sneed was found deceased at about noon Saturday, Oct. 18, in an alley in the 2200 block of Angelica. A resident reportedly called police after witnessing a man, who was driving a silver or gold van, place the body in the alley and drive away. No identifiers were found on the body or known at the time of the initial recovery.
The body was identified through fingerprint analysis on Tuesday, Oct. 21. An autopsy revealed no signs of trauma or obvious evidence of foul play.
Madison County sheriff’s investigators linked Sneed to Jenkins, and determined Jenkins was the last known person to be with Sneed. Investigators determined Jenkins owned a van like the one reportedly seen by the witness at the scene. Sheriff’s investigators located and processed the van at Jenkins’ home during the early afternoon hours of Tuesday, Oct. 21.
Jenkins was located at his home by a sheriff’s deputy at about 4:13 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22. The deputy arrested Jenkins on an outstanding warrant issued out of the Wood River Police Department for disorderly conduct. Jenkins was transported to the Madison County Jail, where he was held pending a formal review of facts by the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office.
Evidence developed by sheriff’s investigators revealed Jenkins dumped Sneed’s body in the St. Louis alley. The exact cause of death in this case is unknown at this point, but evidence developed during the investigation indicates narcotic use may have played a part in Sneed’s death.
The felony warrant and information were signed by Judge Richard Tognarelli. Bond was set at $50,000. Jenkins remains in custody at the Madison County Jail.