Dalton Alexander Mesarchik was born on April 29, 1995, to George E. Scott and Michelle Lee Mesarchik.
In the spring of 2003, Dalton, who was seven years old at the time, went to first grade at Centennial School in Streator, Illinois, a small town near LaSalle and Livingston. Dalton lived in the county of LaSalle.
Dalton liked riding his bike, making art, going to school, and collecting things with Harley Davidson logos on them.
He hoped to get his own Harley one day.
On March 26, 2003, Dalton went missing from his home in the 400 block of Morrel Street while he was waiting for the First Church of Nazarene van to pick him up and take him to a church youth programme.
Dalton didn’t go to church or the youth group very often. Since August 2002, he had only been there two or three times.
Early reports said that Dalton was waiting for the van on his front porch at 7:15 p.m., but the van never showed up.
When his parents called the church, they found out that the programme had been cancelled, but no one had called them to tell them.
It turned out that the van driver couldn’t make it because he had to go out of state to see a sick relative. If the van couldn’t pick up the kids, the church usually called and told the parents to bring their kids to church. Not true in this case.
At 8:34 p.m., Dalton’s mother called the police to say that he had gone missing.
The next morning, the Streator police brought bloodhounds to the scene. The dogs followed Dalton’s scent from the porch to the middle of the street. This made the police think that he had either gotten into a car on his own or that someone had forced him to do so. At the time, they thought that whoever took Dalton might have been driving a van that looked like the church van.
Five hundred people who wanted to help look for Dalton met at city hall. The search also involved the Illinois State Police, the FBI, and the sheriff’s offices in LaSalle County and Livingston County.
State police Sgt. Bill Heinrich split the groups into 10 person teams that were spread out around Streator. The Pantagraph said that as part of the search, boats and horses were brought in.
On Thursday, March 27, 2003, at 11:33 a.m., the search was called off. A fisherman found Dalton’s fully dressed body floating in the Vermillion River, two miles south of Streator in Livingston County. The body was near the Vermillion Boat Club.
Later, police found out that Dalton had been hit over the head with a small Benchtop Pro hammer that only sold at Kmart and weighed 3 pounds. It was Dalton’s blood that was on the handle. Some reports said that his hands and feet were tied, but the police did not confirm this.
Investigators concentrated on tracking down nearly 70 leads.
Friends, family, and sex offenders from the area were talked to by the police. The parents of Dalton could not have done it. They passed polygraph tests, according to a 2015 report.
Investigators looked around the neighbourhood and checked along the roads.
“Search and rescue teams from the Department of Natural Resources Police and the Pontiac Fire Department worked for several hours to look for Dalton’s body in the river,” said the Pantagraph. The police said they were looking for clues in the river.
Even though a lot of people looked for Dalton Mesarchik’s killer, they were never found. Not long after the murder, police had an unknown suspect, but that was another dead end.
Dalton was laid to rest in Hillcrest Memorial Park in Streator on April 1, 2003. The boy who loved Harley Davidson motorcycles and was called “Little Dude” by local bikers was given a biker’s funeral procession.
Since Dalton was killed, there have been a lot of rumours going around. Deana Mesarchik, Dalton’s sister, was said to have killed him. Deana went on a cable talk show in 2015 when she was 25 and took and passed a lie detector test. Michelle Mesarchick said that they didn’t want the rumours that Deana was involved to be true.
If you know anything about Dalton’s murder, you can call the Illinois State Police – Dalton Mesarchik Task Force at (815) 844-1500 (ext. 2321) or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.