Search Leads To Discovery Of Body
The discovery of a vehicle with a deceased occupant Tuesday afternoon near Ayrshire led the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office to determine a Fort Dodge man possibly took his own life. Palo Alto County Sheriff Dennis Goeders identified the occupant of the vehicle as 49-year old Dwayne Melvin Joslin of Fort Dodge.
The Palo Alto County Sheriff’s office was contacted shortly after 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 24, by Webster County Sheriff Brian Mickelson in regards to a report of a missing person. Webster County authorities had traced cellular telephone calls from the subject to a cell tower in Palo Alto County.
Palo Alto County Deputies began a search for the missing person’s vehicle, described as a red-colored vehicle. Shortly after 3 p.m., Palo Alto County Emergency Management Director Mark Hunefeld noticed tire tracks on a no-snow-removal portion of 360 Avenue, south of 420 Street, on the east side of Silver Lake near Ayrshire. Hunefeld discovered a red vehicle stuck in the snow on the roadway with a lone occupant and subsequently notified Chief Deputy Todd Suhr of the discovery.
When Suhr and other deputies arrived at the location in the 4200 block of 360 Avenue, they determined the vehicle was in fact the vehicle reported by Webster County authorities. The driver of the vehicle had driven over several snowbanks before becoming stuck in a large drift. Deputies had to approach the vehicle on foot and at that time determined that the occupant was 49-year-old Dwayne Melvin Joslin of Fort Dodge, the subject of the missing person search. At the time of the discovery, Joslin was deceased.
Special Agents from the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation were called to the scene to assist the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office in its investigation of the scene. Joslin was pronounced dead at the scene by Deputy Palo Alto County Medical Examiners, who later transported Joslin to the Palo Alto County Hospital, and subsequently transferred Joslin to Mason City for an autopsy. Preliminary findings of the investigation indicate Joslin took his own life.
The investigation into the incident is continuing by the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office, Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and the Palo Alto County Medical Examiner’s Office. Assisting at the scene near Ayrshire were Palo Alto County Emergency Management, Palo Alto County Secondary Road Department, Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Reserves, Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, Iowa State Patrol and Palo Alto County Medical Examiner.