By Joe Gorman
An 18-year-old man who was reported missing by his mother was found Friday by a cleanup crew in a wooded area in a Brier Hill neighborhood on the North Side.
Police said Mason Lee Fleming was shot and killed and left on the side of the road next to a vacant house at Worthington and Fleming avenues.
Capt. Mark Milstead, chief of detectives, said Fleming’s mother had reported him missing earlier Friday after she had not seen him for about 24 hours. His body was found about 12:15 p.m.
Fleming’s body was found with no pants. He was wearing socks, shoes and underwear. Detective Sgt. Mike Lambert, one of three detectives at the scene, said no pants were found near his body.
A small crowd of mostly men gathered around and watched as police collected evidence for about an hour. No one wanted to comment. They mostly smoked cigarettes, talked on cellphones, shook hands and hugged one another.
Lambert said he was not sure how long Fleming had been lying where he was found, but it was not for long. He estimated Fleming had been there for “less than a day.” He said it appeared that Fleming had been shot.
Lambert said Fleming was from the North Side.
Fleming’s death is the 14th homicide in the city this year. The last homicide was Oct. 14, when Collena Carpenter, 30, of Homeworth, was found on an access road off West Avenue dead from multiple stab wounds.
At this time in 2012, Youngstown had 22 homicides. The city recorded 26 homicides for the entire year.