One of the most shocking and baffling cases from Netflix‘s Unsolved Mysteries comes in No Ride Home, the case featuring the disappearance and subsequent death of Alonzo Brooks.
Brooks was at a house party in rural Kansas when he was just 23-years-old after driving over an hour to get there with his friends.
However, Brooks never made it home and two days after the party, his family filed a missing persons report – police found his hat and boots close to the house.
The family, who said they weren’t allowed to help with the search which was fronted by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation for a month, but when they were invited to help, they found his body within 30 minutes in a creek.
A lot has been made of the condition of his body when he was discovered, with Unsolved Mysteries highlighting how his remains didn’t seem to be affected by water at all, despite being located by a creek.
According to the episode’s director Marcus A. Clarke (who spoke recently on the You Can’t Make This Up podcast), not only was that suspicious, but the missing piece of flesh from his neck is a “significant” piece of evidence.
Clarke said of Brooks’ medical report: “I have a lot of issues with [this] report, examination and [these] conclusions. To be honest with you, they’re dubious at best. They miss a lot of details or leave a lot of unanswered questions.”
Firstly, Clarke details how Brooks’ body was found in the creek and seemingly looked “normal” – no bloating, no disfiguration and no unusual colouring, all things one would expect to see on a body lying in water for a month.
“In addition,” Clarke says, “you see Maria [Brooks’ mother] going through the belongings that were found on his pocket when he was found. All of these materials are not waterlogged.”
Secondly, Clarke notes how the skin being missing on Brooks’ neck makes for a “dubious” point in the medical examination.
Alonzo Brooks – as featured in Unsolved Mysteries (NETFLIX) Netflix
“The other thing that’s really significant especially if you’re an African American in this country that gets glazed over, is that the skin around Alonzo’s neck was missing. The skin and the flesh was missing just around his neck. That is incredibly important. The medical examiner suggests that animals or bugs could have eaten away at his neck and who knows what could have happened because animals and insects got to him,” Clarke explains.
“I’m confused. Do animals and insects only target the neck? Is a neck more delicious for an animal or an insect than other parts of the body? How do they avoid the ears, the nose, the lips and other fatty areas on the body? What animal only targets the neck? I’m unfamiliar with any animal that does so.
“The fact that that is offered as any type of explanation is incredulous, ridiculous and again, dubious at best. It doesn’t add up. As a principle, you have to look at something like that with a greater level of scrutiny because of the historical precedent.
“Given that this is a Black man and this is in the South, I need an explanation as to where that skin went. If it was bitten off, how and why? Was there something put there to be eaten off? Did something happen to his neck that the only way to hide it or mask what was done is to remove the flesh on the neck?
There needs to be an answer – was he strangled? The medical examiner said he can’t determine.”
Alonzo Brooks’ body has recently been exhumed by the FBI for further examination.
Unsolved Mysteries is available to stream on Netflix. Check out our lists of the best TV shows on Netflix and the best movies on Netflix, or see what else is on with our TV Guide.