Local News

Emergency crews recover body of missing Lockport man from Des Plaines River

Body linked to leg found at Lockport Lock and Dam, authorities said

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The body of Sean Joy, 20, of Lockport, was found after members of the Will County Sheriff's Office and fire department personnel from Joliet, Romeoville, Plainfield and Wilmington met Friday morning to discuss the next step after barge workers found a leg at the Lockport Lock and Dam on Wednesday night, according to a news release from the sheriff's office.[]
JOLIET – Police and fire officials confirmed Friday afternoon that they recovered the body of a man from the Des Plaines River in Joliet, who was identified after an autopsy on Saturday.
The body of Sean Joy, 20, of Lockport, was found after members of the Will County Sheriff's Office and fire department personnel from Joliet, Romeoville, Plainfield and Wilmington met Friday morning to discuss the next step after barge workers found a leg at the Lockport Lock and Dam on Wednesday night, according to a news release from the sheriff's office.
Joy was last seen the night of March 21 at his Lockport home, and his family shared their concern about his disappearance in public Facebook posts.
Christina Joy, Sean's aunt, said this had never happened before and Sean displayed no warning signs before going missing.
The last information Lockport police received on his disappearance was that a witness might have seen him walking about 12:30 a.m. March 22 in the area of East Ninth Street and South State Street in Lockport, Lockport Deputy Police Chief Ron Huff said.
“We’ve heard nothing more from him since that time,” Huff said. “It’s always unusual when someone exhibits behavior they don’t usually do.”
Huff said police previously had no reason to suspect foul play is involved.
A recovery crew of three teams of boats doing a visual and sonar search of the Des Plaines River and surrounding waterways launched about 11:30 a.m. Friday, and members of the Joliet Fire Department found Joy's body a short time after they began their search. He was pronounced dead at 12:10 p.m.
The body was found just south of the Ruby Street Bridge, and authorities declined to release any information about its condition.
The Will County Coroner's Office was called to the scene and took possession of the body.
"It has been determined that the body appears to be related to the discovery of the human leg that was found yesterday at the Lockport locks," the release stated.
Barge workers found the leg about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday. The coroner’s office was notified and took possession of the leg.
“One of the workers had spotted the leg. They originally thought it was a Halloween prop,” Deputy Police Chief Dan Jungles said.
The leg bore no identifying marks. DNA was collected from the leg and will be sent to a forensic lab for comparison.
An autopsy was performed Saturday and through dental records comparison, the Will County Coroner's Office was able to identify Joy.
The sheriff's office and coroner's office will determine the final cause of death after final autopsy and toxicological results.
Funeral home selection was pending as of Saturday.