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Posted at 04:21 PM ET, 06/24/2011

Homicide investigation initiated after remains found in Marlton park identified as those of missing man

Prince George’s County Detectives are investigating the death of a man whose remains were found in a wooded area in Marlton in March as a homicide, authorities said Friday.

Police declined to say how or when 30-year-old Anthony Jerome Nelson died, but they said his death is being treated as a homicide. Family members had reported him missing in August 2008, and his remains were found on March 5 in Marlton Community Park in southern Prince George’s, authorities said.

Police had said years ago that foul play may have contributed to Nelson’s disappearance. A Verizon technician, Nelson told his mother on Aug. 16, 2008, that he was going out with friends. Five hours later, two gunmen entered the family’s Capitol Heights home, restrained Nelson’s mother, aunt and half-brother and ransacked the place, family members said at the time. The intruders fled with cash, a laptop and other items, family members said at the time.

Cpl. Clinton Copeland, a Prince George’s County police spokesman, said in 2008 that police had no specific evidence linking the home invasion to Nelson’s disappearance, though they classified Nelson as a “critical missing person” and said his case might be one involving “foul play.” Benson’s half brother had said the intruders seemed to have used Nelson’s key during the home invasion.

Capt. Stanley Johnson, a spokesman for the Maryland-National Capital Park Police, and Cpl. Mike Rodriguez, a spokesman for the Prince George’s County Police, both declined to say Friday when exactly Nelson died or what caused his death. They said the investigation was still fresh; the medical examiner only officially identified the remains as those of Nelson on June 2, using DNA, Johnson said.

Efforts to reach Nelson’s family were unsuccessful Friday. Anyone with information is asked to call the Prince George’s County police’s homicide unit at (301) 772-4925.

By  |  04:21 PM ET, 06/24/2011

Categories:  Matt Zapotosky, Missing Persons, Homicide, Pr. George's

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