A body found Monday afternoon in a north-metro lake was identified Tuesday as that of 32-year-old Henry McCabe, a Mounds View resident who was reported missing on Labor Day.
McCabe’s death “does not appear to be suspicious,” but the cause remains undetermined pending toxicology results, said Police Chief Tom Kinney.
The Ramsey County medical examiner’s office confirmed that it was McCabe’s body that was found by a kayaker about 4:20 p.m. Monday on Rush Lake in New Brighton.
Kinney said the medical examiner found no signs of injury on McCabe’s body.
But a leader in the Twin Cities’ Liberian community said Tuesday that investigators shouldn’t rule out the possibility that McCabe’s death was linked to violence in his home country, where he survived 14 years of civil war.
“They would kill without remorse. They’ve done it for years,” Lovetta Tugbeh said of some Liberians who have immigrated to the U.S. “We need to find out what happened.”
McCabe was last seen during the early hours of Sept. 7 after having been dropped off at a convenience store in Fridley for unknown reasons. That location is at least 6 miles from where his body was found.
Recent searches began near the intersection of Silver Lake Road and Mississippi Street at Creekview Park in New Brighton, the location of the last call placed from McCabe’s cellphone.
His wife answered that call, at 2:28 a.m. on Labor Day, to hear what sounded like moaning and screams.
David Singleton, the chief executive of Minnesota Community Policing Services, said Tuesday he thinks someone else was involved in McCabe’s death.
“I don’t believe that he just wandered that far on his own and the audio doesn’t support the idea that his death is not suspicious,” Singleton said.
His association had offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to McCabe’s recovery, but it rescinded the reward on Oct. 23 after a fallout with McCabe’s wife because of “her willingness to mislead the public and this committee,” Singleton alleged then.
Since the disappearance, McCabe hadn’t been in contact with his family or his employer, the Minnesota Department of Revenue, where he was an auditor. He has two daughters, 10 and 2.
Tugbeh, of the Coalition for Justice in Liberia, described McCabe as a well-educated family man who wouldn’t intentionally disappear.
“I don’t think somebody would just drown himself,” she said. “Somebody was inflicting harm.”
Tugbeh said McCabe and his wife, Kareen, were part of the Liberian-American community in California before moving to Minnesota.
More than 25,000 people with roots in Liberia live in Minnesota, she said. The Liberian-American community was on edge because McCabe’s disappearance came after 10-year-old Barway Collins went missing from Crystal in March.
The boy’s body was found in the Mississippi River, and his father, Pierre Collins, admitted in August to killing him.
McCabe’s case remains under investigation, Kinney said Tuesday.
“Sad ending for a good person,” Singleton said.