Source: Wheeler's phone found in home across the street

January 6, 2011 3:34:22 PM PST
There is no indication that police are close to making an arrest in the murder of National Defense Consultant John Wheeler, whose body was found in a Wilmington landfill last week. But it does seem that they're learning more information day by day.

Action News has learned that the police now have Wheeler's cell phone.

A source tells us they found it in the house under construction across the street from Wheeler's home in New Castle.

Police have been looking into the possibility that Wheeler may have set off smoke bombs in the house last Tuesday night.

Investigators have removed floor boards near the kitchen sink in Wheeler's home and have surrounded the area with evidence tape.

They also dusted the kitchen floor for shoeprints which reveal someone was inside with what appears to be work boots with a knobby tread.

Wheeler was wearing loafers and holding one of them in his hand when he appeared on surveillance video at a Wilmington parking garage last Wednesday night.

Last night, police took Athel Scott, a cab driver, in for questioning.

They found his phone number on Wheeler's cell phone.

Scott says he doesn't know how his number got on Wheeler's phone, but he says he does remember seeing him.

"I seen him one day by the Hotel du Pont and one day I seen him at the train station going inside that little store, that's all I know," Scott said.

Police have been questioning all of the cabbies near the train station.

They're trying to find out how Wheeler got around after returning to Wilmington on December 28th

He somehow made it to New Castle and back again to Wilmington, while his car sat parked in the garage across the street from the train station.

Wheeler was last seen in the Nemours building at 10th Street and Orange streets as late as 8:30 last Thursday night.

His body was later left in a dumpster in Newark.

The police have been asking the cabbies if any of them took Wheeler to Newark.

"No, I did not give him a ride nowhere," Scott said.

Police still don't have a crime scene. They don't know where Wheeler was killed or where he went next when he left the Nemours building last Thursday night.