Deputies hope autopsy helps them find killer of man found near river

Marcus Franklin (Source: Family)
Marcus Franklin (Source: Family)

IBERVILLE PARISH, LA (WAFB) - Authorities are hoping an autopsy scheduled for Monday will shed some light on the murder investigation of a missing man whose body was found Friday along the Mississippi River.

The Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office identified the body as Marcus Franklin, 31, of Baton Rouge. Sheriff Brett Stassi said Franklin had been reported missing after he was last seen Saturday. Investigators said the body was found on the east bank (St. Gabriel side) of the Mississippi River in Sunshine near the ferry landing.

The East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner, Bo Clark, says Franklin died of multiple stab wounds.

Franklin's family released the following statement Monday morning:

"Our hearts are broken as we try to understand why such a horrible crime could happen to such an amazing person. Marcus was a humble spirit and a very quiet person who would not harm anyone. He was an electrician's apprentice by trade and dreamed of owning a retail business. He was a basketball connoisseur...he coached and played for a men's basketball league. What we would like people to know/remember about him was his love for his children, family and life. Marcus always had his kids whom he loved dearly with him and he had an infectious laughter/smile that would light up a room. We are just asking anyone with information to please contact the police because we need closure and to make sense of it all."

A man who was hunting in the woods found Franklin's body just after 1 p.m. just down from the levee. Officials said it is a secluded area. Officials added the body may have been there for a few days.

Franklin's vehicle was found burned in Ascension Parish earlier this week. Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office officials said a passing motorist found a burned car last Saturday around 10 p.m. near Rena Melancon Road.

The car was a 2005 Dodge Magnum, but it was burned completely. Nothing was found in the car because of how burned it was. The car is currently in Ascension Parish's evidence facility in Gonzales.

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