Updated: January 10, 2013 2:09PM
A veteran Waukegan police officer was found dead in a wooded area north of Antioch near his home by a large search party Thursday morning in what police believe was an apparent suicide.
According to sources, Sgt. Peter Michaels, 44, was reported missing to Antioch police by his family from their Tiffany Farms subdivision home at 6 a.m. Wednesday. He was last seen Tuesday night, and had left his cellphone and car keys behind at home.
About 120 members of law enforcement and explorer groups, as well as K9 teams, made up the search party that spread out about 8 a.m. in the area of North Avenue and Trevor Road on Thursday morning. Some police dogs apparently started following a scent and searchers found the body abut 9 a.m. in a wooded thicket off of Trevor Road, about eighth of a mile from North Avenue.
Two schools about a quarter mile away from the search area were placed on soft lockdown due to the heavy police presence in the area.
The Lake County Coroner’s office is awaiting family notification before confirming the identity of the body.