Ground searches at two homes lead to human remains in 1 case and continuing mystery in another


Local and federal officials located human remains in Moraine on Friday that may belong to a Middletown woman while a likely unrelated search for another missing woman continued in Miamisburg.

Moraine police officials said the remains were located on the ground behind a house on Hemple Road and it wasn’t known how long they’d been there, according to deputy chief Jason Neubauer. Police also detained one man in connection with the Moraine search.

“We located human remains at the back of the property in the wood-line area,” said Neubauer, who added that area was about 15 to 20 feet inside a wooded area.

Investigators arrived at the property Thursday night after Moraine police received a call from Middletown detectives, Neubauer said. The search included cadaver dogs and the serving of search warrants on the home along with an adjacent property across the street.

RELATED: Investigators seal records in Chelsey Coe disappearance after 14-hour search

The man, whom Neubauer didn’t identify, was taken to Middletown to be questioned about the missing Middletown woman. No formal charges have been filed.

“Middletown police are actively investigating along with Moraine police,” said Middletown Sgt. Malcom Tipton. “I can’t confirm anything about our missing cases. Of course we hope all of the missing are found alive, we are assisting with Moraine about the skeletal remains found there.”

Neubauer said there is no information that the remains are connected to a search for the missing Chelsey Coe that was happening in Miamisburg on Friday or any other case. The identification of the remains won’t be determined until tests are conducted, Neubauer said.

Michelle Burgan, 47, was reported missing from Middletown in May 2017. She was last known to be at the Hope House homeless shelter in Middletown and may have been spotted in Dayton, police said.

RELATED: FBI, BCI seek answers in Coe case

More than a half dozen investigators from Moraine police, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the Tactical Crime Suppression Unit were assisting in the investigation.

In Miamisburg, law enforcement on Friday was back on scene at the Lower Miamisburg Road residence where Coe once lived.

“This is a continuation of our search for missing person Chelsey Coe based on additional information that we have come across during our continuing investigation,” Miamisburg police Chief John Sedlak said.

Sedlak said a Miamisburg police supervisor was in Moraine to double-check that the Coe case was not related to the missing Middletown woman. Sedlak said there was no reason to believe there was any connection.

RELATED: Burgan among missing women from Middletown

“There is evidence from the house that we’ll be going through and looking at to determine if there is any type of connection,” Neubauer said. “But that’s not something that we can confirm at this time.”

Sedlak said police returned to the Lower Miamisburg Road home because a person they previously spoke to talked about a “fortuitous spot” to search. The chief said officials were digging down and under the foundation of the side and rear and the main home at the property.

Miamisburg police were joined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, public works and parks and recreation officials, and Sedlak said investigators would stay until they had checked out the potential value of all the spots to be examined.

Police have said it’s “unlikely” Coe is alive after being missing since summer 2017. Several searches have been conducted in the case including at a Greene County park.

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