A coroner's report released Tuesday in the Oct. 1 murder of an 18-year-old Independence, Mo., man in northern Douglas County shows that the victim suffered five gunshot wounds.
Douglas County Coroner Carol Moddrell wrote in her autopsy report that the victim, Timothy K. Ridpath, 18, was shot twice in the abdomen, twice in the neck and once in the head.
Moddrell ruled that the head wound and one of the abdominal wounds "were capable of being fatal." She reported that the abdominal wound appeared to have been inflicted before the shot to the head, which damaged the brain and would have been instantly fatal.
Moddrell performed the autopsy Oct. 2, the day Ridpath's body was found lying beside a car on Douglas County Road 1250E south of U.S. Highway 24-59, about a half-mile north of Lawrence. Authorities have ruled that Ridpath died late Oct. 1.
Christopher W. Mitchell, 18, Blue Springs, Mo., has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the shooting. A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for next Wednesday.
Ridpath's body showed no signs of trauma other than the gunshot wounds, Moddrell wrote. Authorities have reported that the bullets were fired from a small-caliber weapon.