Washington Evening Journal
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Neighbors Growing Together | Nov 24, 2014

Man found dead in abandoned home

By Andy Hallman | Sep 02, 2014

FAIRFIELD — A man was found dead in an abandoned building in Fairfield Sunday afternoon.
According to the Fairfield Police Department, the body was found in an unoccupied residence at 1200 S. Main St. At 1:38 p.m. that day, police received a report of a vehicle in Fairfield belonging to a missing male from Illinois.
It was believed the male might be a threat to himself or others and possibly armed. The male was also suspected of forcibly obtaining entry into an unoccupied residence. Some sections of Main Street were closed during negotiation attempts for the safety of the public. The press release stated the police appreciate the assistance of the public in times like these.
Officers attempted to make contact with the subject inside to negotiate, but those attempts proved unsuccessful. Officers entered the residence and found an unidentified male body inside. No weapons were located in the residence and there was no evidence of a suspicious death. No names are being released, pending identification of the body and notification of family. The body was sent to the Iowa State Medical Examiner’s Office for autopsy. No danger to public safety has been identified, yet, and the investigation is ongoing.
Fairfield Police Capt. David Thomas said family members of the decedent checked the area and found the vehicle outside the residence. He said it’s still not known why the man chose to enter that residence in particular.
South Main Street was blocked off from about 2:30-3:30 p.m. after the first officers on the scene saw what appeared to be a broken window through which someone could have entered the building.      
“The roadway was blocked, which is standard procedure for any possible barricade,” Thomas said. “We didn’t know who was in the residence. We wanted to make contact safely through negotiations to keep everybody safe.”
Members of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Iowa State Patrol arrived on the scene to help manage the situation. Authorities attempted to make contact with the person inside but received no response. Thomas said they are about 95 percent sure now that the man was dead before they attempted to make contact with him.
Three or four members of Fairfield’s tactical team donned exterior vests and ballistic helmets before entering the home. The leading officer carried a bulletproof shield in case someone inside tried to shoot through the door at the officers. The officers knocked several times on the door, which was locked. They broke down the door and announced their presence once inside, which again yielded no response. They found the man’s body in the house. Thomas said it has not yet been determined how he died.

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