GOOSE CREEK, SC (WCSC) - Investigators will meet with the Berkeley County Solicitor's Office Tuesday to decide on a possible murder charge in a Goose Creek missing person case.
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On Sunday, the Berkeley County Coroner positively identified the badly-burned body found in a Goose Creek backyard as that of 68-year-old Michael Mullikin.
Goose Creek Assistant Police Chief John Grainger said his investigators will meet with prosecutors Tuesday morning to discuss the case and the potential issuance of a murder charge.
Mullikin's body was found in a barrel in the backyard of his home on Madeline Drive, Coroner Bill Salisbury said.
On Thursday, Goose Creek Police announced they had issued a warrant for grand larceny for Shannon Maurice Smith, Jr., 23.
Police said Smith was Mullikin's roommate and was one of three people authorities arrested in Mullikin's car in Missouri on March 2.
The pair arrested with Smith told Missouri authorities Smith claimed he leased the vehicle, but Smith identified himself to police with the alias and admitted the car belonged to the missing man, adding that he had permission to use it, the affidavit states.
Grainger said the grand larceny warrant has not yet been served because Smith is currently wanted in North Carolina on a weapons charge that may carry a higher extradition priority.
Police responded to Mullikin's home on the evening of Feb. 27 after his daughter called them and asked that they check on him. She told police she had been unable to reach him for two days.
Officers found the home secure with no signs of forced entry, an incident report states. The resident's daughter told police she had a key to the home, but that her father often changed locks frequently because he has people renting a room from him and then moving out. Her key opened one lock on the front door, but not a second, and she gave police permission to force their way in, the report states.
While searching the property, police discovered a burn barrel in the backyard with a body inside that had been burned beyond recognition, the report states.
The Berkeley County Coroner's Office used DNA to positively identify Mullikin, Salisbury said.