Illinois man accused of hiding cousin’s body after drug overdose

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO (KTVI) – The St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office charged a 45-year-old West Frankfort, Illinois man for allegedly dumping his cousin’s body near a Hazelwood creek after the cousin died of a heroin overdose.

The body of 45-year-old Arthur Van Zandt was discovered around 9 p.m. on September 20, near Cowmire Creek in the 13000 block of Missouri Bottom Road. A police informant led authorities to Van Zandt’s body, according to a report in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Hazelwood police determined Arthur died of a heroin overdose.

In the course of their investigation, Hazelwood police identified William Van Zandt as a suspect. William was already in police custody in Illinois on unrelated charges when investigators attempted to question him about his cousin’s death. William refused to talk to police and requested a lawyer, the Post-Dispatch said.

Prosecutors charged William, 45, with abandonment of a corpse, a felony.