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sabra Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:20 PM
Original message
Ky. census worker killed himself, police say
Source: MSNBC/AP

FRANKFORT, Ky. - A census worker found hanging from a tree with the word "fed" scrawled on his chest last September took his own life, police said Tuesday, adding that an inquiry found that he staged his death to look like a homicide.

Bill Sparkman's naked body was found Sept. 12 near a cemetery in a heavily wooded area of southeastern Kentucky. One of the witnesses who found the body in the Daniel Boone National Forest said the 51-year-old was bound with duct tape, gagged and had an identification badge taped to his neck.

Authorities have said "fed" was likely written in pen.

The Associated Press previously reported, citing law enforcement officials who spoke anonymously, that investigators were examining whether Sparkman manipulated the scene in order to conceal a suicide and make a life insurance claim possible for his son. The two law enforcement officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case.

...

Friends and co-workers have said that even while undergoing chemotherapy for cancer, Sparkman would show up for work smiling with a toboggan cap to cover his balding head. They said the substitute teacher and part-time census worker cherished the values he learned in his youth as he worked toward becoming an Eagle Scout. They said he was punctual and dependable.

Read more: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34130128/ns/us_news-life /
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:24 PM
Response to Original message
1. Wow. They're not even trying to sound plausible.
Just lie; Americans are fine with that.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:25 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. What potential outcome would motivate the FBI and others
to lie about a suicide. I am perfectly willing to consider a crime but why would a host of people who have no interest in changing the outcome bend facts about one guy.
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Tempest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #4
25. The FBI was not involved in the investigation

They left it up to the state to investigate the incident.

Not saying it happened, but the state police could have gotten political pressure to wrap it up as a suicide to save the state's reputation. It's happened before, especially during the civil rights movement.
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24601 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:56 PM
Response to Reply #25
40. Kentucky has a reputation to protect? Unless the FBI jumps in and
refutes the report, I'll presume that this means precisely what it says:

"It is the conclusion of the Kentucky State Police, the FBI, the U.S. Forest Service, the State Medical Examiner's Office, and the Clay County Coroner's Office that Mr. Sparkman died in an intentional, self-inflicted act that was staged to appear as a homicide."

So, as asked earlier, why would the FBI lie? Just to embarrass President Obama & Atty Gen Holder? I think not they run the FBI now.

I ask DUers to check you bias at the door - it this a reluctance to backpedal after this was blamed on the wingnuts? Not everything is their doing and there's enough bad that attributing things on speculation alone "crys wolf" for the sake of hearing ones self.
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KakistocracyHater Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 11:45 PM
Response to Reply #4
98. compulsive liars are numerous in Neocon groups
they just cannot help it, they HAVE to lie.
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no limit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #1
5. What evidance do you have to the contrary?
The way some on DU are so quick to jump in to a conspiracy theory is a bit sad.
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JonQ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:51 PM
Response to Reply #5
85. The evidence?
He's a fed, who was killed, in the *south*. What more evidence do you need? Prejudice and paranoia will be our guiding light.
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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #1
82. more details on investigation:
"A thorough examination of evidence from the scene, to include DNA testing, as well as examination of his vehicle and his residence, resulted in the determination that Mr. Sparkman, alone, handled the key pieces of evidence with no indications of any other persons involved," Kentucky State Police said.

Sparkman's wrists were bound with duct tape, and a rope around his neck was tied to a tree, but his body was touching the ground, authorities said. He had "Fed" written on his chest in black ink.

However, Sparkman's wrists were loosely bound in front of his body at shoulder width apart, allowing for "considerable mobility," said Kentucky State Police Capt. Lisa Rudzinski.

He was also in contact with the ground, "almost on his knees," she said.

"To survive, all Mr. Sparkman had to do was stand up."

Lividity on the body -- marks made as blood stops pumping and settles in areas of the body -- showed that Sparkman died in the same position, Rudzinski said.

His glasses were taped to his head, and that tape was underneath tape that held a rag in his mouth, she said.

"Mr. Sparkman had extremely poor eyesight" and so would have needed his glasses secured, Rudzinski said.

But the most compelling evidence came from the fact that Sparkman had obtained $600,000 in accidental-death insurance, which would not have paid in the event of a suicide, as late as May, she said.

In addition, he told a "credible witness" of his plans to commit suicide and stage the scene to make it look like he was slain because he worked for the federal government. The details were consistent with how Sparkman died and was found, Rudzinski said.
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emilyg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 09:21 PM
Response to Reply #1
97. I believe it. Read in USA
that he took out 2 insurance policies and that he confided his plan to his best friend.
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get the red out Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:25 PM
Response to Original message
2. I knew that was coming
I figure people will come on saying we have to trust the police. But I wouldn't trust Jesus or Buddha if they were employed in eastern Kentucky.
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marshall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:25 PM
Response to Original message
3. He died trying to do good for his son
I wonder how insurance companies in the future (when assisted suicide is part of the freedom to choose)will handle a terminal patient such as this. If it's proven he will die soon anyway, will insurance companies pay if he chooses to end his misery a little sooner?
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AlphaCentauri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:09 PM
Response to Reply #3
45. yep, in his own view he was doing the best for his son within the system
he was living in.
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Roland99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:35 PM
Response to Original message
6. uhhhh.... "does not compute." "does not compute."
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StopTheNeoCons Donating Member (608 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #6
29. +1
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brendan120678 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #6
32. All the evidence released pretty much...
leads one to conclude that it was suicide.

Tests indicated that the letters were applied from the bottom to the top not the way an assailant facing Sparkman would write them. Police concluded that Sparkman wrote on himself, Rudzinski said...

- snip -

For instance, there was no evidence that Sparkman had struggled with anyone. There were no wounds on his body, Rudzinski said.

Tests ruled out any theory that he was drugged and unconscious when he was tied to the tree, making the lack of signs of a struggle more significant. Also, Sparkmans glasses were taped to his head. The question that raises is why a killer would care whether Sparkman, who had poor vision, could see what was going on.

- snip -

And although it is true that Sparkman died of asphyxiation from the rope around his neck, he was not dangling from the tree the way people commonly perceive hanging, Rudzinski said.

His legs were bent at the knee and his knees were less than six inches off the ground, Rudzinski said.

Sparkman could have stood up, taken the pressure off his neck and not died.

Sparkmans hands were bound, but loosely, allowing him to move them shoulder-width apart, Rudzinski said.

The significance of that is that Sparkman could have created by himself all the conditions found at the scene, such as tying the rope around his neck and putting a rag in his mouth, Rudzinski said.

http://www.kentucky.com/latest_news/story/1032979.html
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Roland99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #32
44. All of which could be explained by not-so-bright assailants
They could have grabbed him in his sleep, chloroformed him, etc.

What motive would he have for doing all of that stuff? Quite unlike a typical suicide.

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AtheistCrusader Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:42 PM
Response to Reply #44
50. You don't think a sedative like Chloroform would show in blood test?
Interesting.

I'm sure the coroner would never conduct such a test in a case where foul play is suspected. :sarcasm:
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Chemisse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #32
60. He could have stood up.
That was the tidbit that was most revealing to me.
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Roland99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:25 PM
Response to Reply #60
62. unless he was...oh...unconscious?
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Chemisse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:16 AM
Response to Reply #62
73. If he was,
Then the reason he was unconscious would have been evident on autopsy, and they would not have come up with this conclusion.

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zeemike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:27 PM
Response to Reply #32
64. Killing yourself is not as easy as you think.
If it were there would be no need for guns and hanging yourself
You cannot suffocate yourself with a rope or any other way because the body will not allow it no matter how much you want to die....that is why Kevorkian invented the suicide machine.
Hanging yourself or jumping off a bridge or using a gun works because all you have to do is pull the trigger or jump and then you cant stop it.
I find it hard to believe this story for that reason.

But I would like to know how test could show that the letters were applied from the bottom up....that would be a neat thing if they had a test to show that.
But people are routinely restrained by the cops with no wounds...three or four people can do that with no problem especially if the victim is old and in poor health.
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JonQ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:52 PM
Response to Reply #32
86. But . . . but this was the proof!
Dammit, this was the proof that beck and limbaugh were leading the teabaggers in a war to take over the government and force everyone in to death camps.

It can't be suicide.
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AtheistCrusader Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #6
48. It does in a state with no doctor assisted suicide for terminal paitents
holding life insurance policies they want to pass on to their children.

Different people do different things. Sometimes an old guy will go the range, lay out a rag and a can of breakfree to clean his gun, and then shoot himself in the head.

It's fucked up, but it's what people do within the system. Which of course means, the system is fucked up.
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SecularMotion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
7. Who conducted the investigation?
This article is poorly written. There are no names of any "Authorities" or "police". Only "two law enforcement officials spoke on condition of anonymity".
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jobycom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:55 PM
Response to Reply #7
13. State Police.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #7
21. It's in the first paragraph.
"The Kentucky State Police Post 11 in London, with the assistance of the FBI, the U.S. Forest Service, the State Medical Examiner's Office and the Clay County Coroner's Office, has concluded the investigation into the death of William E. Sparkman, Jr."

http://www.kentuckystatepolice.org/2009/pr11_24_09.htm

The article gives as much information as it can at this time. Very rarely do deaths like this become matters of public interest, in part due to the desire of the authorities to protect the surviving family members of the deceased.
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SecularMotion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #21
26. That information was not in the article at the MSNBC link
when I posted the question.

MSNBC now has further information at the link.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #26
36. I think it's going to come out slowly.
This sort of thing will be drips and drabs. I wish they could just have a press conference, take all questions, and be done with it, but there is the family/survivors to consider, so the authorities have not a whole lot of latitude.

Until then, the speculation will continue.
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monmouth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:42 PM
Response to Original message
8. I'm sure Law&Order would turn this storyline down. Too contrived and
unbelievably unbelievable. That poor man and his family, my heart goes out to them.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #8
19. It's not unusual.
Suicide in this manner isn't that unusual an occurrence. It's hardly talked about, since there is still a huge stigma and shame attached to this manner of death. Remember when David Carradine died? Two autopsies in Thailand, where he died, and then, when his body arrived in the US, his family demanded - and got - another one.

Then, silence.

Shame is a powerful force. You just won't hear about deaths like this. But, believe me, they take place with alarming frequency.

It's a terrible, terrible tragedy. I think his adopted son - Sparkman was an unmarried single father - is still in his teens, and not living with his father at the time of the death. Destitute, and without family, although I just read a quote from Sparkman's mother, so the boy has a paternal grandmother, who, I hope, wants to and is able to take him in. This kid deserves so much better.
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drm604 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #19
30. David Carradine's death was apparently due to auto-erotic asphyxiation.
There's no indication of anything like that here. There's no comparison between the two cases.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #30
35. No?
How do you know that? I'm speculating, of course, but from the news reports, including the determination that "FED" was written from the bottom up, a small but telling detail, it looks like a case of auto-erotic asphyxiation (perhaps without the erotic aspect included). Everything fits.

Why do you think it's not?
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drm604 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #35
38. How does everything fit?
The man had cancer, and he apparently was planning to die (why else write "FED", gag yourself, etc. if you weren't trying to make it look like murder). In cases of auto-erotic asphyxiation, death is not the intent.

When you add "perhaps without the erotic aspect included" you undermine the rest of what you're saying. Without the erotic aspect it's simply asphyxiation (whether by murder or by suicide).

David Carradine apparently died accidentally while pursuing other ends. This man died purposely either by his own hands or the hand of others. There's very little in common between the two cases other than asphyxiation.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #38
43. I'm afraid I don't understand what you said.
As I stated, it looks to be a case of auto-erotic asphyxiation without the erotic aspect. I should think that's a fairly simple sentence to understand. He killed himself by hanging.

There are things people do that seem to defy common sense, they are so insane-sounding, but they happen. I knew a woman who was arrested for a DUI, got sobered up, got out on minimal bail, went home, and hanged herself with a plastic bag from the grocery store, tying it around her neck and to a kitchen doorknob. If I hadn't seen the photographs and attended her funeral, I wouldn't have believed it could be done, but Sandy wanted to die, and she did it.

With Mr. Sparkman and Mr. Carradine, both used the exact same technique, but for different outcomes. Carradine wanted a bigger bang, Sparkman wanted to die and make it look like a homicide.

There is everything in common in terms of what they actually did; why they did it is where the difference rises, but, at this point, it doesn't really matter. Dead is dead.
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Hyper_Eye Donating Member (429 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:29 PM
Response to Reply #43
46. No. You are failing to understand something key about auto-erotic asphyxiation.
The intent of auto-erotic asphyxiation is not death. The intent is very strong sexual satisfaction. That is what makes it completely different. David Carradine did not want to go out with a "bigger bang". His death was accidental. When performing auto-erotic asphyxiation the participant asphyxiates themselves until they achieve orgasm, which is supposedly much more intense this way, and then they stop short of death. It is a dangerous form of erotic behavior that is performed all over the world. Usually it is performed with a partner to maintain some amount of safety. Unfortunately there are people who think they can safely perform this act alone and there have been many deaths because of it. But the bottom line is that Carradine's death was accidental. It was not suicide nor was it murder. He was performing an act he had done many times before and he made a mistake. That is why these cases are not comparable in any way whatsoever. I would say that the "shame" in Carradine's case would be more of an "embarrassment" because he died performing a careless sex act accidentally.

So auto-erotic asphyxiation and "asphyxiation without the erotic aspect" are simply not the same in any way, shape, or form. Intent is everything.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:57 PM
Response to Reply #46
51. I said it carelessly, and you misunderstood.
When I mentioned "bigger bang" regarding David Carradine, I meant that he was seeking the alleged bigger and better orgasm. His death was obviously auto-erotic asphyxiation gone wrong. We agree that it was accidental.

I worked with adolescent boys who got involved with a-e-a, as it was known in those days, and learned a lot about it. That's why this Sparkman case was fairly easy to identify. The ritual is almost always the same.

Shame or embarrassment, the fact is that his family, which clearly wanted so desperately to prove that his death had occurred in any other way except a-e-a, went completely silent after the final autopsy, when the evidence was incontrovertible that it was, in fact, a case of a-e-a that had gone wrong. This happens.

I don't know, though, that Carradine had, as you say, "done (it) many times before." Was that a fact that was known by others? I missed that.

In the end, as I've said before, dead is dead. Carradine wanted a great big orgasm - or did he? Sparkman wanted to die - or did he? All we know for sure is that these men are both dead under very similar circumstances. Was Carradine suicidal? I have no idea. Was Sparkman suicidal? Well, he discussed it with a friend who has not yet been identified.

Intent is significant, yes, but they both used the exact same ritual, so your observation that they "are simply not the same in any way, shape, or form" is incorrect. Ask the rope and the duct tape. The rituals are almost always identical, and, as with the adolescent boys I worked with, they were always naked when found. For the longest time, no one could figure that out, until the auto-erotic asphyxiation matter was introduced, and then it all made sense.

I think there will be more information about the Sparkman matter as time goes by.
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Hyper_Eye Donating Member (429 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:44 PM
Response to Reply #51
56. The Young Turks presented a bit of the information
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BTH4NlLNoHU

I had already seen the interview with Larry King and had seen reports of some of the unusual things David Carradine involved himself in which included other alleged incidents of sexual asphyxiation. There was even some information of similar incidents in the same area where he involved prostitutes. I am at work and because of the nature of where I work it would be unwise for me to search for links to that material for you. People who knew him weren't completely surprised by what happened. Watch the Larry King interview yourself and you will see that the guests did not suspect a suicide as was being reported and they were hardly shocked.

I still maintain that there is a big difference between Carradine performing a sexual act and accidentally killing himself and a man committing suicide and making it look like a murder so that his son might get the insurance payout. They are so completely different and I believe the reason why these two things would be unpleasant to talk about is really for two different reasons.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:49 PM
Response to Reply #56
57. A Larry King show is beyond my tolerance.
But, I'll take your word for it that Carradine was an old a-e-a pro. So he died accidentally, as far as anyone knows. It might have been suicide, too, but we'll never know.

And Mr. Sparkman did the exact same thing, with a different goal in mind, or maybe he, too, was looking for that Big Bang on his way out. We'll never know that, either.

But their methodologies and rituals were exactly the same. And, since neither of us knows anything about the reasons behind why Carradine and Sparkman died, we'll just have to live happily with what we believe.

I've recommended this book to a couple of other people who are having difficulty imagining these situations, and I'll give it to you, too:

http://www.amazon.com/Autoerotic-Asphyxiation-Forensic-...

A most enlightening read. I highly recommend it.
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Hyper_Eye Donating Member (429 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:24 PM
Response to Reply #57
61. The link I provided is a TYT link. It is not the Larry King interview.
Anyone who frequents this site knows TYT. I think you will find it safe for your viewing.
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Twinguard Donating Member (486 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:43 PM
Response to Original message
9. I smell bullcrap.
I don't have any proof or anything. I'm thousands of miles away. All I know is what I've read, but from what I've read, this smells fishy at best. I hope the "official report" isn't so vague and convoluted. I don't have a dog in this race at all, but I'd like to see this poor man's loved ones at least get some straight answers.
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StopTheNeoCons Donating Member (608 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #9
31. +1
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Tsar_Bomba Donating Member (194 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:49 PM
Response to Original message
10. The reason it was called a suicide is to
protect the right from reprisal. The Haves are protecting their own.
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24601 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:01 PM
Response to Reply #10
41. So President Obama's FBI is lying to protect the right? One,
that's nuts and two, you're outrageous statement disses every civil servant. If I weren't on vacation amd mellow, I'd take offense.
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Tempest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #41
42. Obama's been bending over backwards to make the right happy

So it's plausible the FBI is going along with it for that reason.

Not that I disagree with the report, but you don't appear to have been following the going-ons of this administration very closely.
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24601 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:40 PM
Response to Reply #42
49. Large orgs like the FBI aren't monolithic. If they tried to keep a
secret like that, it would get out, along with analysis of the attempted cover-up. There are pockets of incompetence in the civil service; however, the people I see each day are decent folk and dedicated to public service.
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tom_paine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #41
66. Of course, the FBI is no more under Obama's control than is the military
You shouldn't take personal offense considering every level of this nations is swiftly descending into Bushification (and Obama seems very uninterested in halting that at any level, judicial, LE, military or CS) as well as Third World comic-opera corruption.

I do feel sorry for the honest civil servants left, but I am sure fewer and fewer of them are promoted and I would guess that as time goes by, honesty will ultimately become "grounds for dismissal", though it will always be couched as something else to maintain plausible deniability.

Personally, I dont know enough about this case to judge, but when in an Inverted Totalitarian country (like ours - Google the term, please for further undertsanding) with rising levesls of corruption and ignorance, it should ALWAYS be suspected.

Plus, it may be less of a Left-Right thing than a simple protection of the corporate power stucture which rules this nation and has pretty much complete power to rewrite reality on a populace that has literally had it's critical thinking skills systematically eradicated.

Which is a lot to say, "dont take it personally". Which is a lot to say, "we have not yet reached 100% Third World Corruption, though the trend suggests it is possible we will each it one day", and "I feel sorry for the honest people who are probably already suffering".

I do hope your CS division, whichever that is, is one of the last to undergo fully Inverted Totalitarian Corruption. Good luck with that.

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intheflow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:17 PM
Response to Reply #10
54. Nope, it was to protect the insurance comapnies from paying out.
That's my CT, anyway.
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Ian David Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:54 PM
Response to Original message
11. Anonymous sources say. n/t
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era veteran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:55 PM
Response to Original message
12. Bullshit
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era veteran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #12
16. I Emailed KSP The whole world is watching
Again BULLSHIT
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StopTheNeoCons Donating Member (608 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:23 PM
Response to Reply #12
27. +1
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The Northerner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:55 PM
Response to Original message
14. Coverup?
Edited on Tue Nov-24-09 01:56 PM by The Northerner
I don't see what motive the authorities could have for lying.

We're still in a recession and I'm sure that plenty of people would do anything to generate money.

In addition, I doubt that any one would want to lie about the crime considering that the admin and Dems could've used this as evidence against the right as political fodder.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:56 PM
Response to Original message
15. Suicide made sense.
All the facts that I read about the case - the clothes neatly folded in his truck were a tip-off - the son, who had been adopted by Sparkman as a single father, not having more than 16 dollars to his name when his father died, the cancer, the depression that comes with chemotherapy/radiation treatments, and his concerns that the insurance policies' incontestability clauses would have made it impossible for his beneficiary - his son - to collect on them. It looked and sounded to me like he was suffering from a classic clinical depression, and doing a fine job of covering it up.

People in that part of the country, when they want to get rid of someone, don't leave a public display of a corpse. They don't want to be involved with murder, believe me; they're too caught up in making sure their pot-growing industry is left untouched and unnoticed. They want to maintain as low a profile as possible.

I'd like to see the results of the toxicology tests. He probably strung himself up in the same manner as David Carradine. Not necessarily for the auto-erotic aspects of the asphyxiation, but for the deadly certainty of the act. Stoners growing pot and moonshiners are not groups who would ever do anything that would attract the kind of attention this death has drawn.

Sounds like the poor man didn't have an especially "connected" life - no significant other, no close relationships, just a guy with a big smile who seemed to get along with everyone. A man who was more than a little a latter-day Pagliacci, I fear.

I know a lot of people will never believe any of this, about his death being a suicide, but it's not an unusual way for middle-aged men to take their own lives. It's also quite popular with adolescent boys, but a lot of those cases are inadvertent attempts at auto-erotic asphyxiation, young boys who heard about what a great jolt their orgasm could give them if they just strung themselves up. Their families found them naked and hanging and, for the longest time, had no idea why their sons, their very young sons, had done what they had done.

It's sad all the way around. I hope his adopted son will be taken care of by someone. He wasn't living with his father at the time of the father's death, which was odd. There wasn't much written about their relationship, and I'm really curious about it. I hope people will join together to give the kid a hand. He's been dealt a horrible, horrible hand, poor boy.
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Zodiak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 01:58 PM
Response to Original message
17. If it is not a homocide...
Edited on Tue Nov-24-09 01:59 PM by Zodiak
....then I want ALL evidence released. Every last fucking fiber. If there is no perp, then there are no secrets to keep.

But alas we aren't going to get that....just a story.

I refuse to believe this cockamamie story from a PROVEN right-wing police force in a corrupt county unless I see some clear fucking evidence and people willing to state ON THE RECORD AND IDENTIFIED.

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jobycom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:01 PM
Response to Original message
18. I don't know how anyone can conclude otherwise, now that the evidence is out.
His feet were touching the ground so that he could stand without choking, but there were no signs of a struggle. There was no DNA on the rag stuffed into his mouth or on the rope where skin cells would have sloughed off from an assailant. The word "FED" was written from the bottom up. His hands were bound loosely so that he could still move them independently. He had recently checked up on his life insurance policy. He had a history of cancer...

If this were a case of someone being sentenced to death for a murder fitting that description, people here would be sure it was a suicide. I don't understand the fundamentalism on this site sometimes. Reality isn't based on what we want to have happened.
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The Northerner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #18
23. Partisan anger?
Edited on Tue Nov-24-09 02:16 PM by The Northerner
I don't understand the fundamentalism on this site sometimes. Reality isn't based on what we want to have happened. - jobycom

..............

I don't understand that fundementalism either.

But, considering that this is a progressive forum, it could be that some people are so hateful of the right that they're willing to blame the right for anything that seems convenient despite whether it's contrary to the evidence provided.
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jobycom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #23
33. I think it's more of a distrust of government and a reaction to the hatred of people like Beck.
I've seen many cases where the majority here will begrudgingly admit the right has a point when the facts are there. I think this case combines a distrust of government and a reaction to the extreme hatred from the right towards Obama and all liberals. People's first reaction on this story was that the right-wing hate-mongers (Beck, O'Reilly, Limbaugh, etc) had brought this about. I think that's a psychological reaction to the hatred we all get blasted with from those jackasses.

Problem is, we wind up sounding like them when we react that way. I think most liberals can look at the story and say "Yeah, suicide." But a vocal subsection won't.
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 09:45 AM
Response to Reply #18
93. The life insurance clinches it for me
Insurance fraud.
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Brickbat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:07 PM
Response to Original message
20. Sad all the way around.
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lies and propaganda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:09 PM
Response to Original message
22. FTW!
This does not pass the smell test!
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StopTheNeoCons Donating Member (608 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:23 PM
Response to Reply #22
28. +1
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Butch350 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:19 PM
Response to Original message
24. Suicide

How do you bound yourself with duct tape and gag yourself?
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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #24
34. isn't that hard to do.
Do you really think it is that hard? If you take the time to think about it you will realize it isn't that hard to bind gag and hang yourself. If you got a motivation.

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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #34
37. It's surprisingly easy.
There is a whole sub-world of auto-erotic asphyxiation junkies who live for this kind of behavior. If they're bottoms who are topping from the bottom, it becomes part of a highly-ritualized S&M, B&D practice.

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy", is how the quote goes, I think.
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hileeopnyn8d Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 02:51 PM
Response to Original message
39. I'm having a hard time
believing this. This man had cancer, he went through chemo and all sorts of treatments fighting for his life, and I'm supposed to believe he committed suicide while elaborately creating a scene to look like murder just so his son could get his life insurance payout?

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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 03:33 PM
Response to Original message
47. BULLSHIT!
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Nikki Stone1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
52. What I find interesting is that people with very low post counts are supporting suicide as a theory
While the long timers in general aren't. I don't know what this says about longtime DUers or very-short term folks with lots of information.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:11 PM
Response to Reply #52
53. I have a low post count.
I am a person who sees the suicide conclusion as a valid one. Is that a point you were trying to make to me? Why not just ask me directly?

Do "longtime DUers" have some sort of inside access to information in strange death cases in Kentucky? From what I've seen in this world, there are all sorts of places where one might get news and information if one wishes to look around. That's a very funny statement for you to have made - the implication being that "longtime DUers" are somehow more informed and, therefore, more credible, even though their cries of "BULLSHIT!" are sometimes all they can offer in the way of an opinion.

I've lurked here for a long time. My wife posted here for a long time, but quit when, as she put it, "The place just got too stupid and boring." I decided to sign up and check it out. As to your assertion about the superior knowledge of "longtime DUers," I recall a time when Patrick Fitzgerald was closing down his investigation of the Valerie Plame matter, and there was a huge outcry here among "longtime DUers" who chose to believe the absolutely baseless and absurd claims of Jason Leopold, who claimed Karl Rove had been given something like "twenty-four business hours" to clean up his personal affairs, that Rove had been "secretly indicted," that a leading D.C. law firm had been placed in some sort of FBI lockdown for some reason that made no sense.

And all of that was, in the parlance of a "longtime DUer," "BULLSHIT!"

So, it's best to keep an open mind, and to be direct when you feel the need to cast aspersions about the intelligence of someone with a low post count. Especially when a lot of those "longtime DUers" haven't any kind of valid contradictory evidence about the Sparkman matter except for their bias about that part of Kentucky and a firm, if unbalanced belief, that a variety of local, state, and Federal law enforcement agencies would enter into a vast and intricate conspiracy for reasons that have not yet been suitably or intelligently explained.

If you weren't referring to me, my apologies, and I'll let the other person with the low post count deal with you on his or her own time,
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bergie321 Donating Member (797 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:17 PM
Response to Reply #52
55. This low counter
Thinks this is a cover up.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:55 PM
Response to Reply #55
59. Welcome to DU, bergie.
I tend to agree with you.
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Chemisse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:26 PM
Response to Reply #52
63. I think the suicide is likely.
It makes sense, and I am generally skeptical of grand conspiracies.

I think the people who disbelieve the suicide ruling are those who prefer the feeling of righteous outrage they feel thinking it was a crazy, right-wing murder.

Rise above your emotions people!
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jobycom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:58 PM
Response to Reply #52
68. My 42K posts since 2002 disagree with that.
I think the real division is common sense versus wannittabee. The facts of the case make it hard to conclude anything but suicide, and no one has come up with anything other than idiotic as to why a murder would be covered up here. The insurance payout wouldn't be that large, the state police and federal investigators aren't going to protect someone who murders government employees, and even if there was a killer with "Glenn Beck" and "Sarah Palin" tattooes on his forehead Beck and Limbaugh would still convince their listeners he was a liberal and it was all a sign of Obama's degeneracy.

This is weird. I've heard some goofy ass shit in my last eight years on this site, but I swear this is the weirdest I've seen. At least the 9-11 MIHOP people had a valid argument that the conspiracy would be worth it for someone. You don't even have that here. An entire state police force with oversight and assistance from the FBI and other federal agencies is going to cover up the murder of one lowly federal employee all for a minor news story that no one will remember by Christmas? The Feds would want such a murderer crucified publicly, they wouldn't cover it up.
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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:15 PM
Response to Reply #68
88. agreed. it just appears some here just don't want to accept facts that go against
Edited on Wed Nov-25-09 04:17 PM by BREMPRO
their initial belief. I believed he was murdered, and now reading the evidence it appears i was wrong. I have no problem admitting that. It's just not common sense that the feds and the state police would want to cover up a politically charged high profile murder of a census worker and let a murderer go free- who are they protecting? Doesn't make any sense. All the amateur armchair detectives here with no access to the raw investigation materials seem to think they know better. Please. Post count as an indicator of credibility? come on. lets keep it real.
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FreedomRain Donating Member (164 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 12:02 AM
Response to Reply #52
72. post count?
Been here since 03/2006, and still under a 100 posts. Finding myself in both categories is acually apropos here, since I still don't know what to believe :)
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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-27-09 10:44 AM
Response to Reply #52
101. I think it's more likely than not that he committed suicide
and from someone who actually cheers on the execution of a child by his father, anything you have to say about anything is worth less than a pile of dogshit.
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lynne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 04:55 PM
Response to Original message
58. The details make it sound like suicide but I'd like to know his motive -
- for trying to make it look like murder. Was he trying to take the ultimate revenge on someone in the region? Did he have a new life insurance policy he was trying to let someone collect on? Suicide is one thing but the way he went about it leaves too many unanswered questions.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:27 PM
Response to Reply #58
65. Insurance may not pay for a suicide
Edited on Tue Nov-24-09 05:28 PM by ProgressiveProfessor
Also some policies pay double for being murdered. He was totally broke and had cancer.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 05:31 PM
Response to Reply #65
67. lots of insurance contracts pay for suicide after the first year or so...
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lynne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 08:23 PM
Response to Reply #65
70. The suicide clause in most life policies is normally limited to 1 or 2 years -
- and I heard on the radio that he had taken out 2 (I believe) policies within that period of time. Heard it this evening while driving, not sure what station. That could well be the reason to try to fake murder.
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Ishka Kibble Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 07:46 PM
Response to Reply #58
69. Most likely theory right now is that he was faking his "murder."
If he died of cancer or suicide, the two insurance policies he'd just taken out, which would have paid out $600,000 to his son - who is destitute - if Mr. Sparkman died in an accident or was murdered.

So the theory is that he committed suicide and did his best to make it look like murder. A lot of people here seem to think it's not possible to hang oneself in such a way, but that only shows their limited experience with the force of the will to die that seizes some people, and their lack of understanding of how the mechanics of auto-erotic asphyxiation can go so terribly wrong - witness David Carradine.

Mr. Sparkman had nothing, and I'm not even sure that he had any kind of medical insurance that might have covered his cancer treatment. I also don't know if his cancer was even close to remission, or had he been told he was terminal. His life had been an odd patchwork of odd jobs here and there, with no real stability. At the time of his death, his teenage son was living with other adults, not with his adoptive father, which seems odd and sad to me. The boy had nothing when told that his father had died - he said he had sixteen dollars to his name. So it sounds like Mr. Sparkman didn't provide a stable home for the kid, which is too bad.

It would seem, from what I've read, that Mr. Sparkman was simply trying, by giving his life, which probably didn't mean a whole lot to him anyway, so that his son would be able to collect on those insurance policies. If he could make his death look like a suicide, the boy would have received a fat payoff from the insurance companies; unfortunately for Mr. Sparkman, too many people had the exact same plan, and investigators are familiar with the pattern.

With an incontestability clause that - in most states - lasts two years, suicide would not have allowed a payout to the boy.

A sad, sad situation.
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #58
92. It's probably an insurance scam
Yes, he recently took out $600K in life insurance that would not pay out for suicide.
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-24-09 10:41 PM
Response to Original message
71. HUH?????????????
:crazy: :silly: :wtf:
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Chemisse Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:21 AM
Response to Original message
74. So the experts say that it is suicide
And people chose not to believe the experts, preferring to maintain their original beliefs.

This is very similar to the scientists saying there is global warming, and those who prefer to believe otherwise, choosing not to believe them.

Sure, there could be conspiracies for both, but it is unlikely.

Rise above your inner Neanderthal, people!
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:41 PM
Response to Reply #74
84. It's a matter of evidence.
If they named people saying he talked about suicide, and said he BOUGHT life insurance shortly before his death, that would persuade me.

Instead it's one anonymous witness, and he "obtained"/"secured" life insurance, which could just mean it was a job benefit.
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Grateful for Hope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:27 PM
Response to Original message
75. kick
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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Original message
76. KY. census worker committed suicide, authorities say
Edited on Wed Nov-25-09 02:11 PM by BREMPRO
Source: Washington Post

A Census Bureau worker in Kentucky who was found dead in September with "FED" written on his chest killed himself and staged his death to look like a homicide, state and federal law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

<snip>

The condition in which Sparkman's body was found led to speculation about whether he was a victim of anti-government violence. Area residents, however, surmised he had stumbled upon a backwoods drug lab. But investigators concluded that Sparkman wrote the word on his own chest from the bottom up. He died of asphyxiation, an autopsy showed.

Witnesses told investigators that Sparkman had discussed ending his life. He had also discussed recent federal investigations of Kentucky public officials and the negative perceptions of federal agencies expressed by some residents of Clay County, Ky., where he lived, investigators said. Before his death, Sparkman also secured two life insurance policies, totaling $600,000, that would not pay out for suicide.

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20...



looks like many of us jumped to conclusions (myself included) based on hearsay and political views.
Good example of why we should wait till investigations are complete.
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tblue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #76
77. It's very sad. But someone could have been accused of murder.
He could have destroyed an innocent person's life.
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #76
78. I'm not convinced it was suicide.
No information about the "Witnesses" who said he wanted to commit suicide.

Nor does the article say if he bought the life insurance or just got it automatically from work.

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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #78
81. more info on investigation
http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/11/24/kentucky.census.worker...

"A thorough examination of evidence from the scene, to include DNA testing, as well as examination of his vehicle and his residence, resulted in the determination that Mr. Sparkman, alone, handled the key pieces of evidence with no indications of any other persons involved," Kentucky State Police said.

Sparkman's wrists were bound with duct tape, and a rope around his neck was tied to a tree, but his body was touching the ground, authorities said. He had "Fed" written on his chest in black ink.

However, Sparkman's wrists were loosely bound in front of his body at shoulder width apart, allowing for "considerable mobility," said Kentucky State Police Capt. Lisa Rudzinski.

He was also in contact with the ground, "almost on his knees," she said.

"To survive, all Mr. Sparkman had to do was stand up."

Lividity on the body -- marks made as blood stops pumping and settles in areas of the body -- showed that Sparkman died in the same position, Rudzinski said.

His glasses were taped to his head, and that tape was underneath tape that held a rag in his mouth, she said.

"Mr. Sparkman had extremely poor eyesight" and so would have needed his glasses secured, Rudzinski said.

But the most compelling evidence came from the fact that Sparkman had obtained $600,000 in accidental-death insurance, which would not have paid in the event of a suicide, as late as May, she said.

In addition, he told a "credible witness" of his plans to commit suicide and stage the scene to make it look like he was slain because he worked for the federal government. The details were consistent with how Sparkman died and was found, Rudzinski said.
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #81
83. "obtained $600,000 in accidental-death insurance" instead of "bought"
If it was just a benefit of his job, then that doesn't mean anything.
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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #83
87. it appears from reports that he obtained it just before his death that he did not have before
Edited on Wed Nov-25-09 04:04 PM by BREMPRO
otherwise the investigators would not be presenting this as a key piece of evidence for suicide. If it was some routine policy that he received from his work then it has no relevance. I think the semantics of whether he bought, purchased, obtained, or secured are irrelevant- what is important is did he get this insurance before his death in some way by his own choice? and is it significantly more than he had before if he had any at all? From all the reports i've read- it was obtained just before his death, and therefore a factor among the forensic and witness evidence that strongly support the conclusion that it was suicide.
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:24 PM
Response to Reply #87
89. The point is that if investigators wanted to wrap up the investigation by calling it a suicide,
...then they can tell the public he "obtained" insurance, when it was just through a job and didn't buy it.

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BREMPRO Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 04:38 PM
Response to Reply #89
90. i understand your point, but all the other forensic DNA evidence and witness accounts
point to suicide. it's not like they are relying on the insurance as the key factor. But again- i doubt seriously they would take such a high profile case and just "wrap up the investigation" by making assertions about insurance without having evidence that he bought/obtained significant amount of insurance -whatever you want to call it-just before his death. I guess we will have to wait for more details to convince you.
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #89
95. I've never heard of a job that provides that much life insurance without requiring a premium payment
By the employee.
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RUMMYisFROSTED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #76
79. ???
I retain the right to be skeptical of either side.


But I smell bullshit.
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gopiscrap Donating Member (418 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-25-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #76
80. I call bullshit
Sounds like a fucking right wing cover upto me!!!
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maglatinavi Donating Member (614 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 02:21 AM
Response to Reply #76
91. authorities
in the south ... remember birmingham??? and others??? the execution of a probably innocent man in Texas ... many death row inmates found innocent after all??? Give me a break!!! authorities??? humph!!!
:eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke: :eyes: :puke:
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 09:46 AM
Response to Reply #91
94. Do you think the "authorities" faked him taking out $600K in life insurance?
This is way too obvious.
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JonQ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-26-09 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #94
96. I think it's more subtle than that
the authorities have been slowly injecting him with a CIA developed toxin known to produce signs of depression (made by the same guys who invented AIDS). At a key moment they hit him with their satellite based cancer ray knowing this would exacerbate his depression and convince him he didn't have much time left.

Alos, many years ago they impregnated his wife so he would have the incentive to make his own suicide look like a murder for his "childs" benefit (actually the son was created from sperm extracted from the alien corpses found at roswell in the 50s and is part of a larger experiment to produce alien/human hybrids that may survive the coming war with the aliens, but I digress).

After that all they had to do was manipulate the television nationally to put up shows that suggest at insurance fraud at times when they knew he'd be watching and the job was basically done. Just have an intern slip by after the job was done and scrawl "fed" on his corpse and the plan was finished.

All this was done of course to . . . um . . . slightly boost TV ratings for a week.

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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-27-09 12:01 AM
Response to Reply #96
99. Wow! His beloved son and friends would appreciate your callous and glib dismissal.
:(
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JonQ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-27-09 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #99
100. I'm sure they much prefer the actual conspiracy theories
people are already spinning around his suicide to score political points.

Your outrage is selective.
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fascisthunter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-27-09 12:14 PM
Response to Original message
102. BS
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