It’s been two years since a man’s death and the family is still looking for closure in the case. Andrew S. Long, formerly of Roodhouse and a resident of Decatur, died after being found lying in a street near a park in Manchester on October 10, 2017 at approximately 4:55AM. Long had an unexplained head injury and was taken to Passavant Area Hospital and then eventually to Memorial Hospital in Springfield where he died eight days later. Long was in Manchester visiting his mother for a court date on the following day.
A preliminary autopsy revealed no definite signs of foul play. Kelsey Sprong, Long’s girlfriend of 12 years and mother of their two small children, says that someone knows something in the case and has not come forward yet. “We were willing to offer money if that what it takes to make someone to feel more comfortable in coming forward with information. This is a small town. We know someone knows something and maybe they don’t feel like it was an important thing, or maybe they just didn’t think about it at the time because it wasn’t a very public incident; but we need the final missing pieces in order to lock all of this together. The police do have information and the investigation will eventually get there but for my children’s sake and our family’s sake, we’d rather have answers.”
Sprong says that through counselors she has had to tell their two children that someone has hurt their father and that’s why he’s no longer around. Sprong says that she believes Long’s death was probably not an accident. “Andy got transferred up to Springfield. They were amazing, amazing doctors. When the lead doctor came out, he informed us that the main artery to his brain had been severed. The doctor said it was from some blunt force trauma. Of course, we questioned it: Was there any way it was from a fall? The surgeon is obviously skilled and has seen cases like this before many times and has done this type of thing for years. He said definitely ‘no’ that it was apparently some blunt force trauma. Andy had no other defensive wounds, not even from throwing his arms up to catch yourself. The doctor said that your body’s natural instinct is to throw your arms out to catch yourself.”
Sprong said that despite Long’s past involvement with being an addict, he was a really good person to people and was always willing to help, even when he was financially broke. Sprong says that she feels that police have put the investigation on the back burner. “It kind of seemed like that the investigation and the story of his death tapered off. It wasn’t an easy case. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of other crimes that goes on in the area. I’m not saying that it was done intentionally, but it feels like the case got put on the back burner because it’s so important to our family and our lives. Whereas, the police is trying to take care of all of the other crimes and investigations in the county taken under control with new cases. I will say that the officer in charge of the case, Officer Coffman, that we’ve been working with has been a really good person. He’s actually brought in another officer to the case recently because they get busy. It just seems like there wasn’t much press about it and people didn’t really talk about it. Whenever it came to the local police, they didn’t seem to have time for looking into it.”
The family of Andrew Long is offering a $500 reward if an arrest is made in this case. That reward is in addition to what Crime Stoppers would pay for their cold case crimes. Long was found at approximately 4:55AM near a Manchester Park by a pedestrian. Crimestoppers and the Long Family are urging anyone with any information in the case to please come forward. please contact the Scott County Sheriffs Office directly at 217-742-3141 or Crime Stoppers of Morgan & Scott County. You may do so online at www.morganscottcrimestoppers.webs.com and click the leave a tip button or by calling them at 243-7300. Tips may also be submitted by texting 274637 (CRIMES). The first word of the text tip must be “payout”.