The LaSalle County Coroner has identified the male body found earlier this month as 25-year-old Jelani Day of Bloomington, Illinois through forensic dental identification and DNA testing and comparison. He was reported missing back on August 25th.
Day, a 25-year-old graduate student at Illinois State University whose mother said he aspired to become a speech pathologist, was reported missing on August 25 in Bloomington, Illinois. Day’s mother, Carmen Bolden Day, had spoken out in recent days, pleading for more help finding her son after the massive wave of interest sparked in the case of Gabby Petito.
Mr. Day was last seen on August 24, and his vehicle was located in Peru, Illinois, a couple of days later on August 26. An initial search took place on August 26. Fermon said there were extensive K-9 searches conducted by Illinois State Police, drone aerial searches by local jurisdictions, and ground searches.
Nothing was found then or in subsequent searches, he said. Authorities returned on September 4 and found the body that would later be identified as Day’s floating in the Illinois River.”We got some information to give us that second search,” Fermon said, citing there is still a death investigation looking into the cause.
“We were getting tips in, but that’s really as far as I’ll get. We were getting some tips in from around that location.”Fermon would not speculate whether Day’s death would be ruled a homicide.”
“Foul play or not, it’s unusual,” he said. An autopsy was conducted the day after the body was found, he said, but the LaSalle County Coroner has yet to release the results. Fermon described a 10-agency effort that included specialized search and rescue teams near the Peru area where the vehicle was found, with FBI assistance.
The FBI has not responded to request for comment.