Police Find Missing Elderly Man’s Car, Few Other Clues
SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) - Relatives of a Southfield man missing for a month are searching for answers after police find his abandoned car, but no clues as to why he vanished.
Seventy-five-year-old Sheldon Leider, who goes by the name “Cook,” has been missing since Oct. 27.
Marlene Bass, Leider’s sister, told WWJ’s Charlie Langton that the last time she heard from her brother, he seemed busy or irritated.
“I speak to him almost every week because we still have a mother in the nursing home and she’s 99. So every week, I would call him and he would talk to my mother on the phone, and that was a routine we had,” she said. “On Saturday the 26th, he picked up the phone, he said ‘I can’t talk’ and he put it down, and that was the last I heard of him.”
The next morning, Bass got a call from police in Sterling Heights who impounded Leider’s car after finding it abandoned in the area of 18 Mile and Mound roads.
“They said his car was open and the keys were in there. When they cleaned out his car, the police saw a receipt in there from Sunday that he was in Southfield and he bought some orange juice in a store. And that’s they last anybody knew of him,” she said.
Bass said police haven’t been able to uncover any information about her brother’s disappearance. She hired a private detective, but even he can’t find any trace of Leider.
“The police looked around the area, they said they had a dog out there but I guess they didn’t find any clues, any clues at all. Everything in Southfield was checked. They checked the morgues, they checked the hospitals, I’ve checked his bank accounts, I’ve checked with a financial person of his and he did not touch a penny of his money or anything that he owns. I even hired a private detective, but nothing, nothing at all has come up,” she said.
Adding to the mystery, Bass said her brother suffers some psychological issues and was recently placed under on new medications. She said she’s not sure if Leider was having a negative reaction to the drugs, or if he was taking them at all.
“He did well on his medication for 40 years or more. Then this last year, his hands started shaking. His psychiatrist changed him, put him in the hospital for a few days and he seemed to do ok on the new meds. But then he was saying he was tired, so they reduced the amount of medicine he was taking. Then he was confused, so they added the medicine back,” she said.
Bass said Leider had been talking about wanting to find a new place to live, but she doesn’t know if that has to do anything with his disappearance.
“What I know is that he wasn’t real happy where he was living, he didn’t think it was clean and some of the people that moved in to the apartment made him uncomfortable.” she said.
With very few clues about what happened to her brother, Bass said she’s at her wit’s end.
“It’s terrible, it’s been terrible for the whole month. We just want to find him,” she said through tears. “Every night I think about him, what’s the matter and what happened. It’s crazy there’s not even one clue. Nobody’s heard from him or spoke to him and that’s not like him because he hangs around with his buddies and lady-friends and I just haven’t got a clue.”
Leider is described as 5’8″ tall and 150 pounds with hazel eyes, glasses and grey hair.
Anyone with information on Leider’s whereabouts is asked to contact Sterling Heights police at 586-446-2800 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.