News From Terre Haute, Indiana

January 24, 2014

Jasonville death ruled natural

Man collapsed in middle of fight

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

JASONVILLE — No criminal charges will be filed in the case related to the death of a Jasonville man on New Year’s Day, the Greene County Prosecutor said Friday.

Autopsy results on 25-year-old Joshua Ray — who was found dead on the edge of the street outside his home on North Meridian Street in Jasonville — revealed that the cause of death was cardiomyopathy and the manner of death was natural, according to a release issued by Greene County Prosecutor Jarrod Holtsclaw.

It also provided details into the death investigation.

On Jan. 1, at approximately 12:55 a.m., Ray was found by his wife, April Ray, lying on the edge of the street. April Ray sought help for her husband from a neighbor, who called 911, and law enforcement officers from the Jasonville Police Department and emergency medical personnel arrived shortly thereafter. Joshua Ray was declared dead at the scene and the cause of his death was not immediately apparent, police said.

During the course of the investigation, police apparently learned that just just before his death, Joshua Ray left his home and engaged in a verbal dispute with Justin McDonald, who had been walking away from the Ray residence with another individual, Tommy Terrell. Police said that Ray and McDonald then met in the middle of the road in front of the Ray home and the two began to fight, during which, Ray was able to climb on top of McDonald. While on top of McDonald and in the course of beating McDonald, Ray collapsed onto McDonald. McDonald was then able to get up and leave the scene with Terrell, according to authorities, and neither called the police.

April Ray went looking for her husband when he did not come back inside the house, according to the release.

Joshua Ray’s body was transported to Terre Haute Regional Hospital, where an autopsy was conducted by Dr. Roland Kohr, a forensic pathologist. According to the release from the Green County Prosecutor, “Dr. Kohr determined that Ray suffered no injuries from the fight that were serious or that could cause death.”

“In light of the results of the investigation which showed that Joshua Ray and Justin McDonald mutually engaged in a fight in the middle of the street and that Ray died from an undiagnosed heart condition, no criminal charges will be filed in this case,” Holtsclaw said.

The results of the investigation were shared with the Ray family on Friday, authorities said.