Police: Body Recovered From Des Plaines River Likely Matches Leg Found

A body was found in the Des Plaines River Friday near Joliet that appeared to match a human leg recovered in the river days earlier near southwest suburban Lockport.

Dock workers at the Lockport Lock and Dam were assisting a ship through the lock at 10:13 p.m. when a deckhand told them he saw what appeared to be a leg floating in the water, according to a statement from the Will County Sheriff’s Office.

There were no identifying marks on the appendage, and DNA samples were collected for testing in order to determine the person’s identity, the Will County Coroner’s Office said.

The sheriff’s office said the leg is that of a white male, but declined to release further information “until lab results are completed and further information is collected.”

A SWAT boat conducted a sonar grid search of the north and south ends of the lock Thursday but did not find additional remains, according to the sheriff’s office.

Three teams of boats began a visual and sonar search of the river about 11:30 a.m. Friday, and the body was located a short time later south of the Ruby Street Bridge in Joliet, the sheriff’s office said. The body “appears to be related” to the discovery of the leg.

The coroner’s office will conduct an autopsy on Saturday, authorities said. Positive identification and notification of the person’s family were pending Friday.

The sheriff’s office was handling the death investigation. Lockport police were involved in the investigation only as it possibly pertains to an open missing persons case.

The Lockport Lock and Dam is located 2 miles southwest of Lockport and is operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

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