Man charged with keeping dead girlfriend in plastic inside Rockwood home

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The body of a 32-year old woman was found wrapped in plastic inside a Rockwood home.

Her boyfriend Jeffrey Michael Thomas was arraigned Tuesday afternoon, charged with having his girlfriend's dead body in his home and not reporting it. 

Investigators discovered the body of 32-year-old Jennifer Ann Butkowski just after midnight Sunday. Police confirmed her identity through Facebook and her tattoos. 

"The police officer was able to find Jennifer Butkowski's Facebook page and one of the photos was Jennifer's midsection and the star tattoo was the same," said Det. Sgt. Steven Mercure testified.

That night Thomas was covered in blood and went to a neighbor's home. Police were called in and when they went inside Thomas' house, a smell alerted investigators that something wasn't right  

"The officer immediately smelled foul odor and immediately observed what appeared to be a human wrapped in clear plastic and a tan sheet," Mercure said.

Police say as the investigation continues it's still unclear how the victim died because Thomas refuses to answer questions. Her body was so badly decomposed that the pathologist continues to search for answers. 

"He says she has been dead for several weeks and we'll have to wait on toxicology reports to determine what the manner of death is," Mercure said.

The judge questioned Thomas about his employment, to which he replied "U.S. Steel."

"I last worked two weeks ago when all this started coming about," Thomas told the judge.

But Thomas talked about more than a job.

"I will admit there were about three or four days there I was in funk," Thomas said. "All I did was drink. I was upset with myself missing the one person I truly loved." 

Investigators say Thomas is not from Michigan and because his family lives out of state it was a factor in setting his bond at $200,000. 

"I do believe you are a flight risk," said Judge James Kersten. "Bond is $200,000."

The next court date for Thomas is Jan. 30.