City prosecutors decline charges in death investigation involving Dayton man

UPDATE @ 5:45 p.m. (Jan. 7): The Dayton City Prosecutor's office declined misdemeanor charges against William Townsend, who was in a house on Burkhardt Avenue on Jan. 3 when 54-year-old David Jones was found there deceased.

Earlier reporting on this story did not make clear which prosecutor’s office -- city or county -- had declined the charges on Jan. 5. The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office did not review the case because it did not involve potential felony charges.

The misdemeanor charges were obstructing official business, abuse of a corpse, probation violation and failure to report.

Townsend remains in custody, according to a check of the online jail roster Monday night.

UPDATE @ 2:30 p.m. (Jan. 4): 

Police found a Dayton man dead in a Burkhardt Avenue house a day after family members reported him missing, according to investigators.

PREVIOUS REPORT: Homicide detectives investigate after body found in Dayton house

Family members of David Jones, 54, reported he was missing Wednesday, prompting the police investigation, Dayton police Lt. Jason Hall said in an emailed statement.

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“On the morning of January 3rd, detectives were following up in the 100 block of Burkhardt Avenue and located Mr. Jones deceased inside of 119 Burkhardt Avenue,” Hall said.

William Townsend, 52, was inside the house when police found Jones’ body and was arrested on preliminary charges of abuse of a corpse and obstructing official business.

"The cause and manner of Mr. Jones' death is being examined by the Montgomery County Coroner's Office, and any other charges, if necessary, will be considered after their testing is completed," Hall said. 
The case was presented Friday to prosecutors but charges were not approved, according to officials.

We’ll continue to update this story as new details become available.

FIRST REPORT (Jan. 3, 2019)

A man was arrested Thursday after police investigated a body that was found in a Dayton house.

William Leslie Townsend, 52, was arrested at the house in the 100 block of Burkhardt Avenue on preliminary charges of abuse of a corpse and obstructing official business, jail records indicate.

The body of David Jones, 54, of Dayton was found in the house by police Thursday morning.

Jones’ cause of death is listed as pending and will not be ruled until final autopsy results have been made, according to the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.

Townsend remains booked in the Montgomery County Jail. It was not immediately known if he will make a court appearance Friday.

We’ll update this page as new details become available.

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