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Police arrest man after he allegedly buried his mother and sister in the backyard and continued to cash social security checks



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Michael Lelko, 45, has been charged with two felony counts of concealment of loss of life/shifting physique, in accordance with court docket paperwork filed within the Cook dinner County Circuit Courtroom.

Lelko was not charged with the deaths of his mom, Jean Lelko, and sister, Jennifer Lelko, as a result of the medical expert’s workplace couldn’t decide the reason for loss of life because of the deterioration of the our bodies, Lyons Police Chief Thomas Herion advised CNN.

Lelko’s brother, John Lelko, was additionally taken into custody however was not formally charged and was later launched.

The medical expert didn’t reply to CNN’s request for remark.

Herion stated federal regulation enforcement is wanting into whether or not felony costs are warranted, as a result of the mom’s Social Safety checks have been cashed for some interval after her loss of life.

Herion stated the quantity at subject is about $75,000 to $80,000. It’s unclear if the brothers have retained an legal professional.

Police carried out a well-being examine go to on the Lelkos’ home on August 26, 2021, as a result of water hadn’t been used within the house previously 12 months, a court docket doc states.

After talking with neighbors on the time, the police occurred upon Michael Lelko strolling down the road, in accordance with court docket paperwork.

Lelko advised police that they hadn’t had operating water in a 12 months and that his brother had a coronary heart situation, in accordance with Herion.

Officers tried to enter the premises after Lelko gave them permission, however quickly found the one approach out and in was by crawling by means of a window, Herion stated.

“Officers tried to enter the residence, however entranceways have been nearly utterly blocked with containers and detritus,” court docket paperwork stated. “Because of deplorable situation of the residence, officers have been solely capable of get contained in the residence by means of a window.”

“The doorways have been barricaded with particles,” Herion stated. “I might see fleas and bugs and piles from flooring to ceiling, and I can odor urine and feces.”

Herion stated police finally entered the home carrying biohazard fits.

After calling in medical consideration for Lelko’s brother John, Herion requested Michael the place his mom and sister have been.

Whereas within the ambulance, Lelko advised officers that he buried his mom within the yard when she handed in 2015, in accordance with court docket paperwork.

Michael Lelko continued to deposit his mom’s Social Safety checks and two surveillance movies from Citi Financial institution present him making withdrawals from his mom’s account, in accordance with court docket paperwork.

“He stated, ‘We buried my mother within the yard,’ and once I requested him how his sister is doing, he stated, ‘In 2019, she got here down with Covid, she obtained sick and she or he died,'” Herion stated. The first confirmed death from Covid-19 within the US was in February 2020.

He then advised Herion that his sister was additionally buried within the yard.

After Lelko confirmed police on August 26 the place the our bodies have been buried, Lyons Police Division officers and Cook dinner County Medical Examiners went to the placement and “unearthed 2 massive plastic containers,” court docket paperwork say.

“Human stays have been present in every of the plastic containers, and DNA evaluation was carried out,” in accordance with the paperwork.

Michael Lelko was launched on bond and positioned on digital monitoring, Cook dinner County State’s Legal professional’s Workplace spokeswoman Tandra Simonton stated.