State & Federal officials have ruled the death of U.S. Census worker Bill Sparkman a suicide.
Sparkman’s body was found duct taped and gagged in September near a cemetery in Clay County.
The sad press release says Sparkman held two life insurance policies that don’t cover suicide.
UPDATE: Bill Estep has more:
Instead, it took considerably more investigation to rule out homicide. Police even analyzed the ink on Sparkman’s chest to see how the letters were applied, in order to determine whether it was more likely that someone else wrote on him or he wrote on himself.
Tests indicated that the letters were applied from the bottom to the top — not the way an assailant facing Sparkman would write them. Police concluded that Sparkman wrote on himself, Rudzinski said.
Ultimately, there was no evidence to point to murder, she said.
Tests results showed that there was no DNA other than Sparkman’s on the rag in his mouth or on another rag found near his body. Those results, which police received only recently, were a pivotal development.
Other evidence also pointed to suicide as the manner of Sparkman’s death, police said.
For instance, there was no evidence that Sparkman had struggled with anyone. There were no wounds on his body, Rudzinski said.
Another Update: Sorry. Forgot to include the press release.
(LONDON, KY) – The Kentucky State Police Post 11 in London, with the assistance of the FBI, the U.S. Forest Service, the State Medical Examiner’s Office and the Clay County Coroner’s Office, has concluded the investigation into the death of William E. Sparkman, Jr.
The investigation, based upon evidence and witness testimony, has concluded that Mr. Sparkman died during an intentional, self-inflicted act that was staged to appear as a homicide. While all the details of the investigation will not be released at this time, the unusual level of attention and speculation attributed to Mr. Sparkman’s death necessitates this release of information.
The investigation indicates that Mr. Sparkman died of asphyxiation/strangulation at the same location where he was discovered in Clay County, Ky.
Despite the fact that Mr. Sparkman was found hands, feet and mouth bound with duct tape, rope around his neck and the word “FED” written on his chest, analysis of the evidence determined Mr. Sparkman’s death was self-inflicted. A thorough examination of evidence from the scene, to include DNA testing, as well as examination of his vehicle and his residence resulted in the determination that Mr. Sparkman, alone, handled the key pieces of evidence with no indications of any other persons involved.
Witness statements, which are deemed credible, indicate Mr. Sparkman discussed ending his own life and these discussions matched details discovered during the course of the investigation. It was learned that Mr. Sparkman had discussed recent federal investigations and the perceived negative attitudes toward federal entities by some residents of Clay County. It was also discovered during the investigation that Mr. Sparkman had recently secured two life insurance policies for which payment for suicide was precluded.
All tips and leads, including those from the public, were thoroughly investigated but were found to be inconsistent with any known facts or evidence.
It is the conclusion of the Kentucky State Police, the FBI, the U.S. Forest Service, the State Medical Examiner’s Office, and the Clay County Coroner’s Office that Mr. Sparkman died in an intentional, self-inflicted act that was staged to appear as a homicide.
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