Missing 87-year-old found dead in home, son arrested

Autopsy scheduled to determine Henry Conley Fitchett Jr.'s cause of death

Ed Fitchett, 59, and his father, Henry Conley Fitchett Jr., 87, who was found dead in their home near Aurora, February 16, 2017. (KOIN/Marion County Sheriff's Office)

AURORA, Ore. (KOIN) — An 87-year-old man whose son said he went missing months ago after running off with a “mystery woman” was found dead Thursday after deputies executed a search warrant at his home.

Henry Conley Fitchett Jr.’s body was found in the home he was living in with his son on the 2100 block of Hubbard Cutoff Road NE, Marion County Sheriff’s Office said.

His son, 57-year-old Edward Fitchett, was arrested on charges of first-degree theft, first-degree criminal  mistreatment, first-degree identity theft and abuse of a corpse. Ed Fitchett is scheduled to make his first court appearance Friday afternoon.

An autopsy has been scheduled to determine Conley’s cause of death.

The disappearance of Conley Fitchett

Authorities said Henry Conley Fitchett Jr. — who went by Conley — was last seen in September 2016, though his son Ed said Conley returned about 2 1/2 months ago to pick up a “blue suitcase with a whole bunch of underwear and stuff in it, and hearing aid batteries and that was pretty much it. So toiletry-type stuff.”

Ed said Conley was with a woman he described as “white, white-haired, 70, late 70-ish, I’m guessing 150 pounds” who knocked at Ed’s door while Conley was in her car.

Ed also told KOIN 6 News, “I’m in charge of his money. Can’t see anything going on there that she’s helping him do that or helping.”

Ed said his wife is ill and that he was taking care of her.

“My wife has had a whole bunch of medical issues. She’s in worse shape than he is,” he said. “So I’m kind of strapped in that respect.”

It was his wife’s caregiver who asked Ed where Conley was. The caregiver reportedly contacted Ed’s brother through Facebook and “stirred everything up.”

Family members didn’t contact police until January 29.

Investigators are looking into Conley’s bank accounts to see if there is any activity.

KOIN 6 News will continue to follow this story.