Death of Bill Sparkman officially ruled a suicide

Remember the bizarre death of Bill Sparkman a few months ago? Sparkman was a school teacher and part-time US Census worker whose body was found in a remote cemetery in the Daniel Boone National Forest in Clay County, Kentucky. Early news stories seemed to indicate that Sparkman, who was found wearing only socks, with his hands and mouth bound by duct tape, and with the word “FED” written on his chest in black marker, had been brutally murdered.

As soon as the story broke, the Leftwingosphere utterly failed to follow the advice of its Chosen One and immediately blamed the “murder” of Sparkman on “inflammatory rhetoric of Beck, Bachmann, and Fox ‘News’” and “Southern populist terrorism, whipped up by the GOP and its Fox and talk radio cohorts.

Michelle Malkin, who has been following the story closely (and who was specifically targeted by Andrew Sullivan as one of those responsible for fomenting the “Kentucky lynching”) is now reporting that Sparkman’s death has officially been ruled a suicide. McClatchy News has the details:

A U.S. Census worker whose death in a secluded Kentucky cemetery sparked worries about a backlash against the federal government killed himself but tried to make the death look like a homicide, authorities have concluded.

Bill Sparkman, 51, of London, Ky., might have tried to cover the manner of his death to preserve payments under life-insurance polices that he had taken out. The policies wouldn’t pay off if Sparkman committed suicide, state police Capt. Lisa Rudzinski said.

“We believe it was an intentional act on his part to take his own life,” said Rudzinski, who helped lead the investigation.

Sparkman’s nude body was found Sept. 12 by people visiting the cemetery. There was a rope around his neck tied to a tree, and he had what appeared to be the word “fed” written on his chest in black marker.

His census identification card was taped to his head.

The bizarre details of the death caused a firestorm of media coverage and widespread speculation on the Internet, including that someone angry at the federal government attacked Sparkman as he went door to door, gathering census information.

There has been some anti-census sentiment in the country this year, and Sparkman apparently tried to capitalize on that with his ruse.

If there had been no writing on his chest and his identification hadn’t been taped to him, police could have concluded more quickly that Sparkman’s death was a suicide, Rudzinski said.

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.

Naturally the left-wing smear cheerleaders like BradBlog feel that they did nothing wrong, and argue that they never for certain blamed Sparkman’s death on one or more crazed conservatives. Yet Brad Friedman’s original post included statements such as:

Given the deep-seated mistrust of the federal government, no doubt inflamed by many years of rightwing paranoia heard across the public airwaves, along with the community’s direct involvement with several federal stings that have rocked its local residents to the core, it’s probably wise to wait for more details to emerge before jumping to any direct conclusions, and pinning the tail on any particular elephants. (bold emphasis added, italics in original)


If the killer or killers are ever found, anybody here want to bet that they are found to be avid fans of wingnut media?

Objective speculation? No, I don’t think so either.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone
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