An episode of 'Unsolved Mysteries' about a 16-year-old cold case has prompted officials in Topeka, Kansas to exhume the body of Alonzo Brooks as "part of the ongoing investigation."
The U.S. Department of Justice and FBI said they had recently received a credible tip in the investigation of Brooks’ death, WIBW reported.
Brooks, 23, died under mysterious circumstances between April 3, 2004 and May 1, 2004 after he disappeared at a party in the rural community of La Cygne, Kansas. His case was featured in an episode of Netflix's 'Unsolved Mysteries' reboot that explored the case.
The episode narrates the night when Brooks, a well-liked black man, disappeared. According to eyewitnesses and friends who accompanied them that night, Alonzo and several friends went to a keg party they initially believed would be a small gathering of people. However, as the party grew to at least 100 people, the friends said they lost track of Alonzo's whereabouts, with each person believing someone else was giving their friend a ride home from the remote area where the party was located.
The next morning, Alonzo's mother tells one of her son's friends the 23-year-old never made it home that night - which was extremely out of character for him.
An initial search of the area by the farmhouse revealed Alonzo's boots and hat in the weeds across the road from the farmhouse where the party was located. At the time, local law enforcement organized several searches of the area where Alonzo disappeared, but his body is nowhere to be found. About a month later, Alonzo's family is given permission to organize another search of the area. Within a half hour, they found the 23-year-old's boy. The mild decomposition suggests that the body had been stored in a freezer.
An autopsy could not confirm Alonzo's cause of death.
Last year, the FBI announced they were reopening Alonzo's case and announced a $100,000 reward for anyone who came forward with information regarding his death.
"Likely multiple people know what happened that night in April 2004," U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said in a statement last month. "It is past time for the truth to come out. The code of silence must be broken. Alonzo's family deserves to know the truth, and it is time for justice to be served."
Alonzo's family believes he was the victim of a hate crime and that someone at the farmhouse knew what happened to him.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone who has knowledge or information related to Brooks' death are being encouraged to call the FBI at 816-512-8200 or 816-474-TIPS or submit a tip at tips.fbi.gov.