Suspicious Death of Elderly Man now Upgraded to Homicide
Early Friday afternoon, Missoula Police were called to the report of a found body on the north river trail west of the Orange Street Bridge.
The man was described as an elderly white male who appeared to have fallen out of a nearby wheelchair. The officers determined that the decedent had been injured and also learned his identity.
By about 9:00 p.m. on Friday, the case had been upgraded to a homicide.
Missoula Police Department Public Information Officer Detective Travis Welsh stated that witnesses led investigators to determine that the decedent had been struck with a blunt object that resulted in the victim’s death.
At about 11:00 a.m. on Friday, witnesses reported seeing a possible suspect pushing the victim in his wheelchair toward the river trail behind the old Western Montana Clinic Building.
Another witness told police they heard some yelling ‘no’ at about the same time.
That suspect was spotted running back up toward Front Street without the victim and his wheelchair.
The suspect is described as being a male of undetermined age wearing a red jacket with a hoodie and dark pants.
Anyone who may have been in the area or witnessed the incident is asked to call Detective Guy Baker at 552-6284.
The identity of the victim is being withheld pending notification of the next of kin.