Brought to you by WBIW News and Network Indiana
Last updated on Friday, February 17, 2012
(EVANSVILLE)(WFIE) - A credit union employee found the body of a man in the bed of a pickup truck Thursday afternoon on Evansville’s west side.
Police say it is Richard Allen Fulkerson II who was wanted for the attempted murder of his wife.
Just this past Monday, police put out a plea for more information on Fulkerson's whereabouts.
He was the key suspect in the stabbing and attempted murder of Samantha Phillips on January 10th.
Fulkerson had been gone so long, police suspected he may have been getting help on the run.
To understand how Fulkerson's vehicle and body ended up where it did, you have to go back to the night of the stabbing, January 10th, on Culverson Street.
While EPD searched for Fulkerson, his truck was discovered in Henderson. Police brought it back to Evansville and took it into evidence.
The next day, Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation officials notified police that Fulkerson was an EVSC employee and he had a ring of keys they wanted back.
"All the schools were on lock down until those keys could be located. Evansville Detectives went to the tow yard and looked at the truck and saw the keys in plain view in the cab passenger area. They got into the truck and secured those keys so we could take the schools out of lockdown," said EPD PIO Sgt. Jason Cullum.
Cullum says they never checked the bed.
"There are guidelines we have to follow and breaking a lock to get in to look in the back of a truck with no search warrant is not permissible," Cullum said.
With the keys located, police completed a formal investigation and released the vehicle.
On February 3rd, Sterling Federal Credit Union took possession and the truck had been sitting in their parking lot ever since.
Monday, police again asked for the public's help finding Richard Allen Fulkerson II, but his family says they've been telling police where to look.
"They have searched our house and we keep telling them that used to be our truck. We sold it to his brother, search the back. We can't get in the back, you've got to pop it up. That's it," said Fulkerson's family member Tabatha Whittington.
Thursday, police say a credit union employee opened the vehicle around 3 p.m., discovered a body, and called 911.
Police say the whole vehicle has been taken to be processed.
Coroner Annie Groves confirmed the identity of the body as Fulkerson's around 7:00 p.m.
An autopsy is scheduled for Friday to determine cause of death.
Police say hind-sight is 20-20.
They say they really had to weigh legal issues with what they call 'human ones.'
In the end, they say they sincerely wish this family could have gotten closer a whole lot sooner.
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