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Body of missing Richland County woman Melinda Davis found in trunk of her car in Columbus

Friends and family of missing mother offer reward
Posted at 12:40 PM, Mar 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-15 17:06:20-04

RICHLAND COUNTY, Ohio — The body of 33-year-old Melinda Davis, the Richland County mother of four who was last seen on Feb. 25, has been found, according to the Richland County Sheriff's Office, who says her vehicle has been located as well.

After 18 days of searching, the Richland County Sheriff's received a call Sunday at 6:15 p.m. from the Columbus Police Department who had located her Black Jetta in the 5600 block of Zachary Court in Galloway, Ohio. Authorities said they received a tip from a citizen about the car matching her license plate.

The sheriff's office said Davis' body was located in the trunk of the vehicle. Her body was transported to Montgomery County for an autopsy. The vehicle was also taken back to Richland County for processing.

“Our condolences very very much go out to the family. It’s a very sad day. We hope this does bring some closure a little bit to the friends and family. Please keep them in your prayers,” said Sheriff Steve Sheldon.

Davis was last seen on Feb. 25 when she was heading to the home of her former boyfriend, John Henry Mack Jr., to pick up some items she left behind.

Davis later failed to show up for a scheduled breakfast date with her niece. That’s when the family called police. When Richland County Sheriff’s deputies arrived at Mack’s house, they didn’t find Mack or Davis, but they found evidence, primarily blood, that led to kidnapping charges against Mack.

After a week on the run, Mack was arrested by U.S. Marshals and charged with kidnapping.

Jaybyn Mack and his wife Alexandria Mack were also arrested and charged with one count each of obstructing justice. Jaybyn Mack is John Henry Mack Jr.'s son.

During the investigation into her disappearance, News 5 spoke to Davis’s friend, Paula Littlefield, who police believe was the last person Davis texted before arriving at Mack’s home.

“She said I’m almost to Johnny’s house, if you don’t hear from me in a few hours, something may have gone wrong. I said, 'Oh my gosh, you’ve got me freaked out,'” Littlefield said.

The two set up a plan for Davis to call Littlefield when she was done at the house, but Davis never called.

That's when Littlefield drove to Mack’s house.

“When I pulled onto the road, I saw a sheriff’s car and Melinda’s niece and I knew, I knew something was wrong,” said Littlefield.

Prior to the discovery of her body and car, Davis's family and friends led a search party and offered a $5,000 reward for information that led police to her location.


Richland County woman first reported missing now believed to be kidnapped by ex-boyfriend

Richland Co. man arrested after allegedly kidnapping Shelby woman, 2 others arrested for obstructing investigation

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