Jefferson deputies send out hanged man's prints to confirm identity

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CHIMACUM — The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office by Thursday had sent fingerprints for analysis to confirm the identity of a man who hanged himself from a tree within sight of a primary school Wednesday.

“We think we know who he is, but we want to be sure, so we've sent his fingerprints to the State Crime Lab in Olympia,” said Joe Nole, the department's chief criminal deputy.

The man was found dead hanging from a branch 45 feet up a fir tree on property adjacent to Chimacum Creek Primary School after deputies received a call at 11:26 a.m.

The Sheriff's Office on Wednesday said the man was 28 years old and from Port Hadlock.

The people deputies think is the man's family have been contacted. Nole said he did not know whether the body had been identified by family members.

Wearing red

The man was wearing a red sweatshirt. If he had not been wearing red, he may not have been discovered for days, said Prosecuting Attorney Scott Rosekrans, who is also the county coroner.

Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Menday said Wednesday there is “no reason to suspect foul play” and that the death was clearly self-inflicted.

School officials notified the Sheriff's Office and East Jefferson Fire-Rescue.

The tree was several hundred feet from the school in an area that is adjacent to the Jefferson County Library.

Students and staff remained inside the school, which has an enrollment of 238, for recesses and lunch until police and fire officials had completed their work and cleared the scene, according to a letter sent to parents by Principal Mark Barga.

Once the body was removed, the students returned to their regular routine and were dismissed at the usual time.

The body was taken to Kosec Funeral Home in Port Townsend.

Last modified: May 15. 2014 7:24PM
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