Neighbors say previous owner of Trenton home where skull was found ‘wasn’t scary’

Human remains were found in a fire pit at a Trenton home this week; the previous owner is now dead

Trenton neighbors react to human skull found in fire pit by new homeowners
Trenton neighbors react to human skull found in fire pit by new homeowners

TRENTON, Mich. – Police are investigating a skull that was found at a home in Trenton -- which previously belonged to a man recently killed in Tennessee.

READ: Trenton police investigate human remains found in fire pit by new homeowners

Officers have loaded the last pieces of evidence into a mobile forensics lab on Tuesday, hoping to uncover the mystery of whose skull was found.

“It’s very strange,” said neighbor Mona Whitaker. “It’s just not like this neighborhood at all.”

Tom and Mona Whitaker say it is hard to wrap their heads around the unfolding story of their former Trenton neighbor, Mark Eberly, and the skull found in a fire pit on the property he once owned.

“He was typically friendly. He’d wave. We talked to him sometimes,” Tom Whitaker said. “(I) just couldn’t imagine it.”

The now-deceased Eberly, 57, moved out of the property on Wilson Street just a few months ago. He reportedly lost his life after opening fire on an officer in Tennessee about one week ago.

“We knew he had some problems and some troubles,” Mona Whitaker said. “But this was just out of the blue.”

Mona Whitaker said prior to Eberly moving out earlier this year, she would not have expected any of this to happen.

“He wasn’t scary or anything,” Mona Whitaker said of Eberly. “We thought maybe he sometimes seemed a little strange but did things maybe a little quirky.”

After seeing this week’s story unfold, however, Mona Whitaker is starting to connect the dots.

“This almost makes more sense. After you hear about what happened a week ago,” Mona Whitaker said. “It’s almost like you can tell it’s tied in together but before that, you couldn’t believe it.” 

In the meantime, investigators are working to identify the victim whose remains were found at the home.

Police say a woman lived with Eberly in the Trenton home who is believed to be his girlfriend. Attempts have been made to locate her, but they have been unsuccessful.

Check back with Local 4 News as we share more details on this developing story.


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