July 23 (UPI) — Authorities in Iowa identified a dead body found behind a cooler in a supermarket in January as an employee who was reported missing in 2009.
The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation’s criminalistics lab identified the remains as Larry Ely Murillo-Moncada, 25, using DNA collected from his parents, the Council Bluffs Police Department said Monday.
Workers discovered the body on Jan. 24, while removing shelves and coolers from the No Frills supermarket, which closed in 2016.
Murillo-Moncada’s parents reported him missing on Nov. 28, 2009, when he was 25 years old, saying he became upset and ran out of their home.
“It was a snowstorm at the time,” Council Bluffs police Sgt. Brandon Danielson said. “He left with no shoes, no socks, no keys, no car.”
Murillo-Moncada was not scheduled to work on the day he disappeared, but former employees told police it was not uncommon for employees to enter and exit the store outside of their shifts and that employees would often spend time on top of the coolers.
Investigators believe he went into the store, climbed on top of the coolers and fell into an 18-inch gap between the back of the cooler and the wall.
Danielson said it was about a 12-foot fall and the noise of the freezer units could have muffled his cries for help.
The case of Murillo-Moncada’s death has been closed and was classified as an accidental death.