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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Michonda Weaver

Body in river identifed as missing man

Michonda Weaver, center, waits for word of what happened to Leighton Welch, while two of her children Elijah, left, and Zackahriha have a snack in their South Hill apartment April 6. Welch's body was recovered from the Spokane River last Thursday. (Jesse Tinsley/SR)

A body found in the Spokane River on Thursday has been identified as a Coeur d’Alene tribal member missing since a phone call with his girlfriend ended abruptly in March.

An autopsy by the Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office determined Leighton L. Welch, 35, drowned, the Spokane Police Department confirmed Friday.

His body was pulled from the river close to the Stevens County line and near the Nine Mile boat launch, police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer DeRuwe said.

Welch’s girlfriend, Michonda Weaver, said she was talking to him via cellphone on March 28 when he described a steep cliff and said he’d been spooked by a pit bull in the area.

The phone went dead after a crash and a scream, Weaver said.

Read the rest of my story here.

Past coverage:

April 6: Spokane man's disappearance a mystery

Spokane man missing after bizarre call

The mystery of the man’s disappearance began with what his fiancée described as a bizarre ending to a phone call.

 Leighton Welch, 35, was walking in Spokane and talking on his cellphone to Michonda Weaver, his girlfriend of nearly four years.

Weaver said he described a steep cliff, then said he’d been spooked by a pit bull in the area. Then, a crash and a scream before the phone went dead. That was March 28.

Weaver (pictured above with her two children and right with Welch) has not heard from Welch since.

No one else has either, she said, and his family is frantic.

Read the rest of my story here.

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