A body has been found in a Prince George's County park -- and park police and a family believe it is that of the 80-year-old man who wandered away from an assisted living facility's picnic three weeks ago.
The family of Lubin Phipps and their lawyer said at a news conference Monday that they want prosecutors to bring criminal charges against the assisted living facility in whose care Phipps was when he went missing Sept. 18.
"It can't be characterized as anything else but a homicide," lawyer Ed Leyden said. "If those who were responsible for Mr. Phipps and taking care of him failed in their duty, an accounting and a reckoning will and must happen."
Daughter Michelle Phipps said her family is devastated.
"We trusted Woodmore House Assisted Living with our father and we had hoped they would keep him safe and provide good care, and it's obvious that didn't happen," she said.
Lubin Phipps went missing after he was taken to Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro with other residents of Woodmore House Assisted Living. He asked to use the restroom and wasn't seen again, his family said.
Woodmore House declined to comment on the probe.
The body, believed to be that of Phipps, was found Sunday afternoon during a search by Maryland-National Capital Park Police and volunteer search-and-rescue teams.
Park police told News4 the body was found in a soybean field, about 180 yards from where a search for Phipps previously had been conducted. Watkins Regional Park spans more than 300 acres. Authorities said Sunday that the body and the clothing matched Phipps' description.
The Prince George's County Police Department is investigating the death.
Woodmore House had seemed like the perfect home for Phipps when he moved to Maryland from the Virgin Islands, his daughter Michelle said. The family wanted him to have 24-hour care.
"It was very close in proximity to our home. It was a brand-new facility, and the staff appeared to be very friendly and caring," she said.