NEW ORLEANS - Police expect to make an arrest Thursday night in the murder of a New Orleans man who was found buried in St. Bernard Parish.
Investigators were questioning a "person of interest" in custody Thursday.
A quiet New Orleans East neighborhood has been part of a police investigation ever since the man who lived in the 7500 block of Michigan Street went missing more than six months ago.
“We started backtracking and as Detective [Debra] Normand dug deeper and deeper, she uncovered facts that led her to believe this might involve foul play,” said Lt. Gary Marchese, NOPD homicide unit.
This week, investigators confirmed Jeffrey Bonck, 55, was beaten to death. They found his body buried several feet below ground in a remote part of St. Bernard Parish.
They say a tipster who helped lead them to the location is not a person of interest.
“I think it's safe to say without the tip leading us, the body would probably not have been found,” said Marchese.
Police believe Bonck was murdered in Orleans Parish.
Neighbors who spoke with Eyewitness News said they didn't know Bonck but saw police bring canines to his and another home on the block a few weeks ago.
Records show the same man owns both homes. Neighbors said police were looking to question him about the murder several weeks ago.
Both homes are now up for sale.
“We're taking statements and we've been in consultation with the DA’s office,” said Marchese.
Police said multiple agencies worked together to investigate the case, including the new Jefferson Parish Criminal Intelligence Center, a task force designed to help law enforcement throughout the metro area.
Meanwhile, Marchese said he’s never seen a case quite like this one.
“Twenty five years, I think this may be the first one I've ever fooled with,” he said.
Police said they're looking at a number of leads in this case as the investigation continues.
If you have any information that could help police, call Crimestoppers at (504) 822-1111.
Stay tuned to Eyewitness News and wwltv.com for the latest information on this developing story.