Missing Fort Wayne man's body recovered from Maumee River, mom says

The mother of 26-year-old Jabari Mbwelera says police used DNA to confirm his body was recovered from the Maumee River in May.

Posted: Aug 24, 2019 7:33 PM
Updated: Aug 26, 2019 12:50 PM

The mother of a Fort Wayne man missing since January says police have confirmed his body was recovered from the Maumee River back in May.

Jabari Mbwelera, 26, was last seen on Jan. 16th.

Kathryn Mbwelera tells FOX 55 police on Friday confirmed through DNA that a body pulled from the Maumee River near Defiance on May 24th was indeed her son.

UPDATE: The Defiance County Sheriff's Office on Monday confirmed the body is that of Jabari Mbwelera. 

Mbwelera says police have not determined a cause of death. 

Jabari’s father, Kamari, was his last family member to see him alive. Kamari Mbwelera told FOX 55 in February that he picked his son up on the morning of Jan. 16th after his car broke down.

The car was taken to an impound lot. His father said he had several missed calls and texts from his son later that night, suggesting something happened. He was apparently at the Lassus Handy Dandy near his house on Spy Run when he made the calls.

Police in May charged Jabari with battery in connection with a fight on Jan. 16th. Family members said at the time they hoped the criminal investigation would provide more resources to find him.

Now Kathryn Mbwelera says she hopes police will continue to investigate.

“We’re in the process of bringing him home and laying him to rest,” she said.

Article Comments

Fort Wayne
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 38° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 29°
Angola
30° wxIcon
Hi: 33° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 30°
Huntington
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 34°
Decatur
Overcast
36° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 36°
Van Wert
Overcast
36° wxIcon
Hi: 37° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 36°
Partly Cloudy Saturday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events