(CNN) — Former NFL player Sergio Brown is missing after his mother died from injuries related to an assault and her body was found near a creek behind her suburban Chicago home, according to police and records obtained by a CNN affiliate.

Authorities discovered the body of 73-year-old Myrtle Brown on Saturday after relatives alerted police they’d been unable to find or contact her or her son, the Maywood Police Department said in a news release.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office determined Myrtle Brown died from injuries related to an assault, and the manner of death was ruled a homicide, records obtained by CNN affiliate WBBM show.

Police tape cordoned off a residential street in Maywood – about 15 miles west of the Loop – as police responded, video from WBBM shows.

“Myrtle, she was an outstanding woman, and I’m hoping she’s in the right place and she’s with God,” Carlos Cortez, Myrtle Brown’s next-door neighbor, told WBBM. “I never would’ve expected this in a million years.”

Sergio Brown, 35, played for Notre Dame before signing with the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2010. He played seven seasons in the NFL as a member of the Patriots, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars and Buffalo Bills.

As the investigation into his mother’s death continues, Maywood police say anyone with information can contact an anonymous tip line at 708-450-1787. The lead investigator on the case, Dennis Diaz, did not respond to CNN’s request for more information. CNN has reached out to Brown family members.

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