BENTONVILLE (KFSM) – The Bentonville Police Department on Monday released the identity of the body found in a local home the day before, while they search for a man connected to the case.
The body was identified as 76-year-old Nelma Darline Conklin. Police said they are investigating the incident as a suspicious death, but have not determined a cause of death.
Authorities are searching for the woman’s grandson, 26-year-old Michael Eugene Conklin, in connection with the case. The two lived together, and Michael Conklin’s whereabouts are unknown.
Michael Eugene Conklin is not considered a suspect at the time. He does not have a felony record in Benton or Washington counties.
The body was sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for an autopsy. Police said they expect the autopsy results to come back by mid-week.
“We just need to get the autopsy results back and see if we can determine anything in regards to cause and manner of death that will help us go down the right road,” said Capt. John Hubbard of the Bentonville Police Department. “At this point, we just really do not know. We need that medical help.”
Police said they were originally called out to the residence, located at 3300 SW Elm Manor Ave., to check on Conklin, who hadn’t shown up to her job in one week. When officers arrived to check on Conklin, they found her dead inside her home.
Police said Darline Conklin’s vehicle, a silver 2013 Ford Focus with the Arkansas license plate 583OCT, is also missing from the home.
“Those things kind of tend to lead to the suspicious side of things, as far as what happened to the vehicle,” Hubbard said. “You know, just the things that they found at the scene doesn’t necessarily support natural death.”
Police said they are looking for Mr. Conklin for his statement, along with the missing vehicle. They said they believe the grandson may have information that could help with the investigation.
“Maybe he’s aware of doctor visit, or things like that that could’ve happened in that time frame that she did not report to work,” Hubbard said.