Staff member objects to 'angry' readers
Meridian – The family of a Clifton woman who died mysteriously in a county jail cell here on May 4 suspect she was murdered.
Interviewed over the weekend, she said, “We're waiting on the autopsy report.”
When District Attorney B.J. Shepherd released an autopsy report on what he has termed a jail house suicide by hanging, he only gave the information to certain media outlets, all of them located in Waco.
The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office released the information on Monday, June 24, that April Troyn died in a manner consistent with hanging and ruled her death a suicide.
She was found “unresponsive” in a cell where she had been alone on May 4 following an arrest for child endangerment – apparently.
The information as to what offense authorities booked her for, or exactly when she was processed into the jail, has been ruled confidential under the orders of Texas Ranger Jim Hatfield, according to Justice of the Peace Ray Ballman.
The judge also declined to release any of the findings of the autopsy he ordered, saying he is acting on the advice of the Bosque County Attorney, who gave the Ranger's pending investigation as a reason.
He referred further inquiries to Ranger Hatfield. Ranger Hatfield is unresponsive to phone calls.
A staff member of the DA's office who would identify herself only as “Dena” said she would not accept an open records request for information about the autopsy because the readership of this blog appears to be “an angry crowd.”
In fact, she said, she can tell from reading the things I have written that, “You appear to be an angry person.”
She declined to state her name, saying only that, “You'll not report any quotes from me in your report.”
Questions remain in the matter, such as the condition of the decedent's neck. Was it chafed or bruised? Forensic medical examiners make a thorough examination of the neck in a case of hanging. If no clear evidence is found, they continue to look for another cause of death.
In cases of hanging, the hyoid bone, a small u-shaped formation that is not connected to the skeleton but only to certain muscles in the neck which are located under the tongue, is usually not broken.
In cases of stangulation, it is often broken, according to standard texts on forensic post mortem examinations. There is usually evidence of broken blood vessels in the eyes in cases of strangulation. The autopsy revealed only that the manner of her death is consistent with asphyxiation, according to published reports attributed to Mr. Shepherd.
No official report is available to other media outlets.
In an interview, Ms. Troyn's sister Christina Morgan said she and Ms. Troyn's other sisters examined her body prior to her burial and found no bruises or markings on her neck.
They found only markings on the left side of her back.
“It looked like she had been beaten,” she said. “I feel that my sister was probably murdered.”
For further information on what is known about Ms. Troyn's death, one need only click the links located below: