Loved ones remember man police say was murdered and left in a ditch in Whitley Country

Curtis Thomas, 30
Curtis Thomas, 30(Fort Wayne's NBC)
Published: Mar. 21, 2022 at 5:30 PM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) - New details on an investigation into a Fort Wayne man’s body found in a ditch in Whitley County.

The probable cause affidavit was released Monday and outlined the death of 30-year-old Curtis Thomas from Fort Wayne.

The documents say Thomas was meeting up with three people at the Regency Inn the morning of March 14th. Police say 27-year-old Robert Drake, 20-year-old Ashlynn McClain, and 34-year-old Mia Griffin were meeting up with Thomas. The documents say Griffin was driving the four of them and Thomas and Drake were in the backseat arguing.

McClain told police she heard a single gunshot then heard a last breath from Thomas. The documents also say, McClain told police they pulled the car over on CR 700 East in Whitley County, dumped the body in a ditch, and fled the scene.

Loved ones have been seeking answers in Thomas’ death, including Patti McKinley.

“I was devastated, I know he has kids, he has family members,” she said. “Me and my mom just decided we should do something.”

McKinley says she and Thomas dated for a short time and when she heard about his passing she wanted to set up a memorial. She says her and her mom went to the ditch where he was found and placed a cross to honor his life.

“We brought flowers, two crosses, I wrote down gone but not forgotten,” she said. “Nobody deserves to die that way, no matter who they were.”

McKinley says Thomas was always loving and supportive of everyone. She says he’s leaving behind children and other family members. They are raising money for his funeral expenses. You can donate, here.

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