Today (Oct. 25), NBC News reported on a Black mother who learned about her son’s passing at the hands of police — seven months after she notified authorities of his disappearance.

Back in March, Dexter Wade left his residence and was fatally hit by an officer-driven SUV while walking across Interstate 55 in Jackson, Mississippi. The incident was ruled accidental and, not long after, the 37-year-old was identified and contact information for his mother, Bettersten Wade, was located. “Once we get that information, I turn it over to police because it is their jurisdiction so that they can do the proper death notification,” said Hinds County Coroner’s Office official LaGrand Elliott.

According to Bettersten, she never received that information. Instead, she turned to posting on social media and making frequent calls to the Jackson Police Department while searching for her son. As a lead investigator continued to tell her that there were no leads on Dexter’s whereabouts, he was buried in a common grave next to unclaimed bodies in July.

The following month, a new investigator took over the case after her predecessor retired and was said to have uncovered the truth less than a couple of weeks later. “They had me looking for him all that time, and they knew who he was,” Bettersten stated in regard to learning what took place. As far as why it took so long to find out, she mentioned past issues with law enforcement. Her brother, George Robinson, died after being slammed by a Jackson cop in 2019. The former officer in question, Anthony Fox, was convicted of culpable negligence manslaughter and sentenced to five years in 2022 — a judgement that he and others within the state government’s ranks are trying to get reversed. “Maybe it was a vendetta. Maybe they buried my son to get back at me,” Bettersten added.

It wasn’t until this month when Bettersten was finally able to find Dexter’s resting place. Now, she’s working to raise the money needed to retrieve his body and place him at a proper gravesite.