Police: Man locked in closet, starved for his assistance checks - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Police: Man locked in closet, starved for his assistance checks

(WMC-TV) - A Midtown Memphis man was hospitalized after he was trapped and starved inside his closet for his government assistance checks.

Memphis Police said Friday that 57-year-old David Miles was locked in a closet and nearly starved to death inside an apartment on North Claybrook.

Reverend Thomas Ailsworth lives next door.

"To me, I think it's wrong," said Ailsworth.

According to a police memo, the suspect used a dresser to keep Miles locked in the closet.  Allegedly, the suspect was doing so in an effort to continuously steal Miles' government assistance checks.

The memo also stated that when police went to the apartment, Miles was not in the closet but sitting in a recliner in the bedroom.  Police said Miles had been severely emaciated and malnourished.

Action News 5 knocked on the door of the apartment.  A man and a woman inside were upset and did not want to talk on camera.

"Police was up here, case worker just left asking him if it's OK if they can come back," said the woman.

"I told them no," said the man.

"He told them no," the woman added.  "There's too much lying going on."

Miles told officers he had been in the closet prior to their arrival, but he did not know how long.  When detectives checked the hall closet, they found feces and trash as though someone had been in the closet.  The dress had also been slid away from in front of the door.

"Person got to have common sense not to do that," said Ailsworth.  "So incidentally, whoever did it didn't have any common sense."

Miles was taken to the hospital in non-critical condition.  Investigators said they also found two of Miles' bank cards and a gun inside the apartment.

So far, no arrests have been made.

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