Physical altercation likely not cause of Kirbyville man's death

Physical altercation likely not cause of Kirbyville man's death

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is still awaiting final autopsy findings and toxicology results, but, according to Chief Deputy Clint Hodgkinson, preliminary autopsy results indicate a physical altercation 34-year-old Jason Murray Smith of Kirbyville was involved in at the time he collapsed was not what caused his death.

According to initial reports of the incident from OCSO, on Saturday, January 31, 2015, at 7:45 p.m., deputies responded to the Baptist Hospital in Orange in reference to a death investigation. The preliminary investigation into the death revealed that a 34-year-old white male from Kirbyville, later identified as Smith, and a 40-year-old white male from Bridge City were at a residence in the 3500 block of Beadle Road in the Orangefield area of Orange County. It was reported that the men were fighting when Smith lost consciousness. The other man put him in his personal vehicle and drove him to the hospital in Orange where authorities were notified.

Investigators were on scene at the hospital and the residence to investigate the incident further and collect any evidence available, OCSO reported on Jan. 31. Justice of the Peace Precinct 2 Judge Derry Dunn ordered an autopsy to be conducted into the mysterious death on the morning of Feb. 3.

The 40-year-old man who was in the altercation with Smith at the time of his death is cooperating with investigators, OCSO reports. The preliminary autopsy indicates Smith did not die due to the fight, and no arrest is expected at this time, according to the Chief Deputy on Feb. 3. The cause of death remains unknown. Toxicology results are pending and will take several weeks, he said.

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