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INCIDENT / ARREST REPORT
Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department
711 Jackson Avenue
Oxford, MS 38655
___ Senior Citizen
___ Child Abuse
___ Involved Alcohol
Reporting Officer's narrative
REPORTING OFFICER'S NARRATIVE(Brief narrative of the facts surrounding the offense and the arrest.)
At 5:07 p.m., Dispatch received a 911 call reporting two bodies discovered at the residence located at 604 Tyler Avenue. The caller identified herself as Vanessa Pruitt, wife of one of the deceased. Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Unit 305 (Deputy P.J. Watson) was dispatched and arrived at the scene at 5:11 p.m. Upon verification of the presence of two bodies, at 5:14 p.m. R/O notified Dispatch and requested backup. Unit 216 (Officer Kennon Winters) and Unit 224 (Officer Steve Harding) were dispatched to provide backup and arrived at the scene at 5:22 p.m. and 5:25 p.m. respectively.
Reporting Investigators (R/Is) Detectives T. Armstrong and S. Murphy were assigned and proceeded directly to the scene. At R/Is' request, Coroners Inspector L. Johnson and a CSU team were notified to respond to the scene. R/Is arrived at the scene at 5:38 p.m. Upon arrival, R/Is found that R/Os had secured the area. Environmental conditions at the scene upon arrival are as follows: Exterior Ambient Temperature 77°F/25°C; Relative Humidity: 86%; Interior crime scene location Ambient Temperature: 72°F/22°C; Relative Humidity: 44%.
R/O Watson made the following verbal report, which is stated in summary and not verbatim.
R/O was admitted to the residence by an adult female (Person 3) who identified herself as Vanessa Pruitt, co-owner and resident of the home. Person 3 directed R/O to the basement of the residence. R/O entered the basement and observed two adult males lying on the floor. R/O observed that both men appeared to have suffered gunshot wounds and that neither showed any signs of life. R/O exited the basement and secured the scene. R/O then reported the situation to Dispatch.
R/O said YCSD Unit 216 (Officer Kennon Winters) arrived at approximately 5:22 p.m. and provided backup and assistance in securing the scene, and Unit 224 (Officer Steve Harding) arrived at approximately 5:25 p.m. and provided further assistance. R/O said that, to his knowledge, the following persons had occasion to enter the crime scene area and must be excluded by CSU personnel: witness Vanessa Pruitt and himself.
After receiving the report from R/O Watson, R/Is conducted a preliminary inspection of the residence. R/Is observed no signs of forced entry at any entry point into the residence. R/Is then proceeded to the basement.
The basement consisted of three rooms: a large, carpeted room, approximately 50 feet by 30 feet, containing a pool table, TV area, and two tables with seating; a half bathroom, approximately 11 feet by 9 feet; and a utility room, approximately 11 feet by 21 feet, containing a furnace, a water heater, and storage cabinets.
There was one exterior door, approximately 22 feet from the bottom of the stairs on the south wall, which was closed and which led to the backyard of the residence. The thumb lock on the doorknob of the exterior door was locked, but the deadbolt was unlocked. R/Is observed no signs of struggle in the basement.
Immediately upon entering the basement from the main floor of the residence, R/Is observed the body of an adult male (Person 1) on the floor approximately 7 feet northwest of the bottom of the staircase. Visual inspection indicated the victim was wearing a long-sleeved blue shirt, khaki pants, and brown slippers and had suffered an apparent gunshot wound to the abdomen area. R/Is further observed an apparent fresh contusion on the victim's face.
The body lay on its left side with the left arm outstretched at an approximate 90° angle to the body and the right arm behind the body at an approximate 30° angle to the body. R/Is noted a semi-automatic handgun on the floor near the head of the body and an empty .45 caliber shell casing near the feet of the body.
R/Is further observed a second body, also an adult male (Person 2), approximately 6 feet north of the bottom of the staircase. Visual inspection indicated the victim was wearing black pants, a gray long-sleeved shirt, black shoes, and black socks, and had suffered an apparent gunshot wound to the chest. The body lay in a supine position with the left arm alongside the body and the right arm raised above the body.
R/Is noted that the carpet under both victims appeared to be saturated with blood. R/Is further observed traces of what appeared to be blood on the carpet in the vicinity of the two bodies. R/Is delayed further inspections of the bodies until the arrival of the Coroner's Inspector.
Coroner's Inspector Luwinda Johnson arrived at the scene at approximately 5:53 p.m. and joined R/Is in the basement of the residence.
Inspector Johnson pronounced victim #1 (Person 1) deceased at 6:00 p.m. by visual observation that the victim was not breathing and by tactile observation that the victim did not have a palpable carotid pulse. Inspector Johnson visually examined the body and observed an apparent gunshot wound to the abdomen. No exit wound was immediately apparent. Inspector Johnson noted that rigor mortis was resolving and that fixed lividity was present on the left side of the body.
While she withheld an official estimate pending an autopsy, Inspector Johnson speculated Person 1 had been dead approximately 18 to 20 hours and the apparent cause of death was a gunshot wound. Inspector Johnson indicated that further details would be available in the official autopsy report.
Inspector Johnson pronounced victim #2 (Person 2) deceased at 6:14 p.m. by visual observation that the victim was not breathing and by tactile observation that the victim did not have a palpable carotid pulse. Inspector Johnson visually examined the body and observed an apparent gunshot wound to the chest. An apparent exit wound was observed on the victim's back between the left and right scapulas. Inspector Johnson noted that rigor mortis was resolving and that fixed lividity was present on the posterior of the body.
While she withheld an official estimate pending an autopsy, Inspector Johnson speculated Person 2 had been dead approximately 18 to 20 hours and the apparent cause of death was a gunshot wound. Inspector Johnson indicated that further details would be available in the official autopsy report.
After Inspector Johnson completed her initial inspection of the bodies, she stayed with the CSU team to ensure the integrity of the bodies, while the team took photographs of the scene and performed preliminary analyses until the bodies could be removed from the scene without affecting other evidence.
CSU arrived at the scene at approximately 6:12 p.m. R/Is requested that CSU take note of the empty shell casing and examine the scene for any additional casings.
Following a preliminary inspection of the scene, R/Is attempted to interview Person 3 regarding her discovery of the bodies but found she was too upset to participate. Person 3 did indicate that Person 1 was her husband, Robert Pruitt. She further indicated that Person 2 looked familiar to her but she could not identify him. R/Is arranged to conduct a formal interview with Person 3 at a later time.
R/Is left the scene at 9:35 p.m. Before leaving, R/I Murphy instructed CSU to seal the scene upon completion or end-of-day suspension of processing. CSU to notify R/Is of progress by the end of this date. As of this filing, CSU is still actively processing at the scene.
Bodies of the deceased remanded into the custody of Coroner's Inspector Luwinda Johnson. The deceased were removed from the scene at 11:01 p.m. and transported to the coroner's office for autopsy.
Evidence remanded into the custody of Forensics Officer T. R. Douglas for transport to the State Crime Lab for routine analysis. CSU is expected to submit an inventory of items taken into evidence within fourteen days of this report, with detailed report(s) of their findings to follow at a later date.
|REPORTING OFFICER||Sam Murphy||DATE REPORTED||7/10/2021|
|REPORTING OFFICER|| //Sam Murphy
|ASSISTING OFFICER|| //Ted Armstrong