Left: Picture of Victim; Right: Reconstruction of Victim depicting what he may have looked like in the late 1970's
The unidentified male had gone by the name Joseph Newton Chandler III, the name of a 9-year-old boy who died in a car wreck on US. Highway 82 in 1945, along with his parents as they traveled from Tulsa to Weatherford for the Christmas season.
Police believe John Doe and Joe Chandler III would have been about the same age, a contributing factor in John Doe's decision to become Joe Chandler. After Eastlake Police used dental records to verify the deceased John Doe was known as Joseph Chandler, they closed the case, listing it as a suicide.
The probate courts worked through his estate, which included an $82,000 legacy. They contacted Joe Chandler's relatives in the east, and discovered the real Joe Chandler died in the 1945 accident.
John Doe had used his alias at least since September 1978, when he wrote off for a copy of Joe Chandler III's birth certificate, and applied for his first Social Security Card, while he was in Rapid City, South Dakota. His dental records were made during the 23 year period he went by the alias.
John Doe shot himself in the head in his apartment using a .38-caliber Charter Arms handgun that had been purchased at a Western Auto store in Seagoville between 1968 and 1978. The store has been closed for some time and its records destroyed. The gun has never been reported as stolen or missing.
Although Investigators can't connect the actual time that John Doe walked became Joe Chandler, they believe it would have been between 1968 and 1978. At some point, evidence showed, he was in California, worked around or was in the US Navy, and had some electrical engineering experience. He moved to the Cleveland area in 1979, and then to his last apartment in 1986.
He lived a hermit life, going only to work and out to eat.
Investigators Source Information:
If you have any information about this case please contact:
Eastlake Police Department
Lt. Tom Doyle
You may remain anonymous when submitting information.
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