The mother of a Middletown 20-year-old whose body was allegedly dumped in woods after she overdosed does not want her daughter to have died in vain.
Leslie Dalton was found dead Sunday afternoon in a dry creek bed behind homes in the 2900 block of Wilbraham Road. Middletown police say her death is being investigated as an overdose, but other crimes were committed because her body was moved.
“I want her to be the voice for all these girls out there … for the ones who have gone missing,” Rebecca Charlton told this news outlet today.
Charlton said her heart is broken for her city.
“We need people out there being the voice for these people who are addicted and these girls,” Charlton said. “Police need to go after people who are selling these drugs.”
Two people interviewed by detectives said Dalton died at a Wilbraham Road house and they moved her body in the dark of night, according to court documents obtained by this news outlet.
Dalton had reportedly been missing since July 27.
Charlton said after losing her daughter, the middle of three children, her life never will be normal again.
“It’s going to be incomplete,” she said through tears while sitting on her couch next to her daughter’s missing flyer. “I don’t know if I ever will be the same.”
Charlton said she and family and friends searched for five days, sometimes using flashlights to look in vacant homes until 4 a.m. She said many leads that were posted on social media were dead-ends, but eventually Dalton was found.
“My heart was broken,” Charlton said when she heard about her daughter’s decomposed body being found.
Dalton, who attended Middletown City Schools, had a drug problem, her mother said. She wanted to move her daughter away from Middletown, away from the bad influences in her life, her mother said. After Dalton was released from jail, she was “doing so good,” Charlton said.
Then she returned to drugs.
“She made a mistake and relapsed,” her mother said. “Once she got a taste of it, it was back on.”
Charlton has a message to drug dealers in the city: “Get a real job. Stop selling these drugs. We need to stand united.”
Sally Hollon, Dalton’s grandmother, and a friend were the ones who found the 20-year-old.
They smelled what appeared to be a dead body, Hollon said.
Her friend told her: “Stop. You don’t want to see this. It’s her.”
Hollon said she was “devastated” by her granddaughter’s death.
“They threw her out there like she was just trash,” Hollon said. “She wasn’t. She was a very good person. We beat the streets until we found Leslie.”