Missing-boy case yields no clues

Published September 12, 2006

LEESBURG - Detectives on Monday sifted through the belongings of a mother who killed herself almost two weeks after her 2-year-old son vanished.

Melinda Duckett, 21, was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound Friday at her grandparents' Central Florida home, police said. They have found no evidence to indicate the fate of her son, Trenton Duckett, reported missing Aug. 27.

"They are going through her stuff taken from her apartment and her grandparents' home to see if there is a note or something," police Capt. Ginny Padgett said. "It's frustrating. We don't have any indication one way or the other, or an idea of where he may be."

Police think the toddler was taken through a hole cut in the window screen of the Leesburg apartment he shared with his mother.

Police did not say whether Melinda Duckett was a suspect in the case. On the advice of her attorney, she refused to take a polygraph test.

Relatives said pressure of the investigation and media attention may have pushed Melinda Duckett to take her own life. Her grandmother, Nancy Eubank, said she was "worn out, nervous and heartbroken."

Trenton's father, Joshua Duckett, took a polygraph test, and investigators were "satisfied with his responses."