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Police believed man had died from natural causes until medics saw his scrotum

Police believed man had died from natural causes until medics saw his scrotum

They missed his cause of death at first

On the evening of 15 September 2010, a 55-year-old man was relaxing in his room at the Elegante Hotel in Texas smoking cigarettes and eating candy bars.

However, he never checked out of his room his wife started to worry as he hadn't called her and they always talked on the phone on the mornings when he was away.

The body of travelling businessman Greg Fleniken would be found in his room with the TV still on and his money untouched.

Around his bed were cigarettes and candy wrappers and at first it was believed that he must have had a heart attack.

According to ABC, Greg's friend Miles Martin said his first thought was that 'those damn cigarettes finally snuck up on him'.

The 55-year-old was found dead in his hotel room.
Courtesy the Fleniken Family

Local police detective Scott Apple learned that the Louisiana man would head home for the weekends while during the week he'd travel for work and stay in hotels such as the Elegante.

Fleniken's evening routine consisted of smoking and eating sweet treats, so very little seemed out of the ordinary at first to the detective as it appeared that the businessman had tragically died of a heart attack in his room.

However, when his body was taken to the medical examiner to determine the cause of death it was found that Fleniken had suffered serious internal injuries with broken ribs, damage to his liver and a hole in his heart, as well as a tear on his scrotum.

It was thought that the 55-year-old might have been beaten to death, but there were no bruises on his body which would suggest that.

His death was ruled as a homicide, but no killer could be found.

A wound on his scrotum indicated that Greg didn't die of natural causes.
Courtesy the Fleniken Family

Fleniken's widow Susie ended up contacting Ken Brennan, a private investigator who met with detective Apple and started going through the details of the case.

That Fleniken had been killed was not in doubt, but it wasn't a robbery as around $1,000 of cash had been left untouched in the room.

A handyman who'd visited Fleniken's room on the night of 15 September to fix an electrical fault also had a rock-solid alibi.

A search of the hotel room uncovered a small indentation in the wall which turned out to be a hole that had been filled with toothpaste, and interestingly the hole carried on through to a neighbouring room.

The hole lined up with a bullet's trajectory, having been started in the neighbouring room and carrying on through to Greg's, and if a bullet had made the hole then it would have carried on and hit the bed.

Investigators learned the 55-year-old had been shot from another room in the hotel.
Facebook/MCM Eleganté Hotel

Suddenly the scrotum wound made sense, Fleniken had been lying on the bed smoking and eating, a bullet had been fired through the wall and entered his body through the scrotum before tearing through his torso from the inside.

His internal injuries now made sense, and while Greg's body had been cremated the detectives shared their findings with the medical examiner who agreed with their suggestion.

It turned out that in the neighbouring room had been three men: Lance Mueller, Tim Steinmetz and Trent Pasano.

They had been drinking in the room when Mueller's gun went off, missing both of the other two men in the room but hitting the wall.

Steinmetz had seen Greg's body being wheeled out of the hotel the next day, and agreed to call Mueller on a recorded line, telling the man he should confess.

In 2012 Mueller pleaded no contest to a charge of manslaughter and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Featured Image Credit: Courtesy the Fleniken Family

Topics: US News, Crime, True Crime