Mother finds out missing son was in the morgue, says she wasn't notified

“This is not normal. There's something wrong. Please help me."

Suzanne Rogers spoke to Fox 2 on August 4, after filing a missing persons report. She reached out to the station for help in finding her son who had been had been missing from his Clinton Township home since August 1.

“I was calling hospitals, jail – anything I could think of. My daughter and his girlfriend were driving around in the scummiest parts looking for him in case he did relapse."

Unfortunately he did relapse.  A heroin overdose killed her 25-year-old son, Jimmy Tuttle. 

“My son was struggling.  He lost his father six years ago to a car accident. He struggled with heroin. In fact, he just come home from prison in November."

Jimmy was found dead in a drug house near I-94 and Moross on Detroit's East Side, but he died on August 1st.

Jimmy had been dead for five days but she wasn’t informed. Suzanne says Jimmy had his wallet, which was taken by the Detroit Police at the scene.

“You don't not notify the next of kin. I don’t care if they’re a dope addict or a saint. It doesn’t matter. We’re all human."

Lisa Croff, a spokesperson for the morgue said that when the body came in, it had no ID.

“It's just good public policy to reach out to the family as quickly as you possibly can," said Bob Cannon, Supervisor for Clinton Township.

Fox 2 talked to the Detroit Police. They say they do take evidence – such as identification -  from the body at the scene so they can make a preliminary investigation, but it's up to the morgue to identify the next of kin.

Investigators at the morgue - using Facebook - thought the body might fit the missing person's description and notified Clinton Township police.

Two days later the day our story aired. The next day Suzanne was told by Clinton Township to identify her son at the morgue.  

“These people would probably give their dog more respect than they gave my son. They're going to have to live with that for the rest of their lives.”

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