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Coroner: Man’s body found in car

Courtney Astolfi • Mar 3, 2014 at 2:59 PM

Officials discovered a burned body late Thursday night inside a car that exploded on Jacobs Road in Ridgefield Township.


Huron County dispatchers received two 911 calls at about 9:15 p.m. from nearby residents who first reported a car fire, and then reported an explosion, Huron County Chief Deputy Ted Patrick said.

Huron River Joint Fire District firefighters rushed to the scene, which is about a mile south of the Erie County line, and extinguished the blaze in a short span, Patrick said.

Found inside the burnt Mercury Sable were the charred remains of what appeared to be a man, Huron County coroner Dr. Jeff Harwood said.

The man’s body was found in the back seat, Harwood said. Deputies soon deemed the death suspicious in nature.

Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation agents joined Ohio State Fire Marshal employees in responding to the scene to process evidence. On Friday, however, the evidence began to paint a clearer picture for investigators. “We treat every unusual and suspicious death as if it’s a homicide until evidence indicates otherwise,” Patrick said. “We’ve uncovered significant evidence that this death is something other than a homicide”

When asked if the death appeared accidental, Patrick said no, but declined to comment further on the matter until investigators have more information.

Now, deputies are awaiting autopsy results and a positive identification from the Lucas County coroner’s office, which will likely come through dental records, Harwood said.

Even so, deputies believe they may know the victim’s identity.

“We have talked with family members of who we think it may be. That individual is missing. That vehicle did belong to (the same) individual” Patrick said.

Officials expect more information early next week.

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