Mothers of missing men wait as police work to identify bodies found in Highland Park
Cat Fogle has seen the news — three men's bodies discovered in Highland Park on Thursday, in the basement of an abandoned, rat-infested apartment building, buried under debris.
She fears the worst may be true, that one of those bodies belongs to her son.
"I just have this gut feeling that it's my baby in there. I just want to see him and make sure," Fogle told the Free Press.
Fogle's son, Montoya Givens, 31, of Detroit, disappeared the evening of Jan. 21, along with two friends set to perform a hip-hop set at the east side Detroit club Lounge 31 — Armani Kelly, 27, of Oscoda, and Dante Wicker, 31, of Melvindale. The performances were canceled. No one has heard from the three men since.
Michigan State Police Lt. Mike Shaw said Detroit police were investigating the case in the area of McNichols Road and Log Cabin Street when bodies were discovered Thursday in the basement of the abandoned Highland Park apartment building.
Friday morning, Shaw said detectives weren't yet able to identify the men by sight alone due to weather conditions and the conditions of the bodies.
UPDATE:Bodies identified, mystery persists in death of Michigan rappers, friend
The victims' mothers continued to wait in horror. By Friday afternoon, Shaw said the victims were identified. Police were notifying family members before releasing the names publicly, he said.
For Fogle and Donna Lewis, Wicker's mother, the waiting has been brutal.
More:Mother in case of 3 missing rappers: 'I don't know who to trust'
"We want to know when can we confirm and view his body," Fogle said.
It took hours before members of a homicide task force and a forensic lab could get into the building, Shaw said. Authorities had to wait for search warrants to be approved to search the building, recover the victims, and gather evidence. And once those search warrants were approved, the building's poor, rat-infested condition slowed forensic progress, Shaw said.
The bodies were transported to the Wayne County Medical Examiner's Office for autopsies, but results may take up to 48 hours because extremely cold temperatures left the bodies in a state that delayed the start of the autopsies, Shaw said.
"It’s been terrible for me. I've been upset, I'm mad, I'm angry, I'm distraught. Keep the investigation going until they find out what actually happened," Lewis said.
"I don’t know anything about anything. All I know is my phone keeps ringing off the hook."
Givens, nicknamed "Jugg," is not a rap artist, despite initial police reports, and is a supportive friend and loved one, according to a GoFundMe page that was created to help cover the cost of Givens' funeral, in the event that he is identified as one of the bodies found. Kelly, known as "Marley Whoop," and Wicker, "B12," are rap artists who were supposed to perform that night and brought their friend along.
Lorrie Kemp, Kelly's mother, could not be reached for comment. She posted to her Facebook page Thursday night asking for space.
"I need time to deal with this," she wrote.
In a previous interview with the Free Press, Kemp described her son as creative and ambitious. His fiancé, Taylor Perrin, said music was everything to him.
Perrin and Kemp told the Free Press they couldn't reach Kelly after around 5 p.m. on Jan. 21.
Lounge 31 owner Darnell Williams told the Free Press the performances were canceled the night the men went missing because of technical failures with DJ equipment. He said there were too many people in the crowd to know whether or when the missing men arrived at the venue, but that police were reviewing video footage.
The car Kelly drove from Oscoda to Detroit was found in Warren. A juvenile was arrested in connection with the vehicle's theft and charged with receiving and concealing stolen property, according to Warren police.
Andrea Sahouri covers criminal justice for the Detroit Free Press. She can be contacted at 313-264-0442, email@example.com or on Twitter @andreamsahouri.
This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Mothers of missing Michigan men wait in anguish after bodies found