Journalist’s Death an “Arkancide”?

Evidence mounts that the death of investigative reporter Gary Webb was not a suicide:

NEW YORK The death of investigative reporter Gary Webb has been confirmed as a suicide, according to a coroner’s statement. There has been speculation that he may have met with foul play because he had received two gunshot wounds to the head, The Sacramento Bee reported Wednesday.

“The cause of death was determined to be self-inflicted gunshot wounds to the head,” said a statement issued by the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office. “Information and evidence gathered at the scene of death, including a handwritten note indicating an intention on the part of the decedent to take his own life, resulted in ‘suicide’ as the determined manner of death.”

The statement was issued because of numerous calls to the Coroner’s Office following a Bee report Sunday that Webb’s death was caused by more than one wound. A former San Jose Mercury News reporter, Webb was found dead in his Carmichael, Calif., home Friday morning.

Webb gained national attention in the 1990s after writing a series of stories for the Mercury News linking the CIA to Nicaraguan Contras trying to overthrow the Sandinista government and to drug sales of crack cocaine flooding South Central Los Angeles in the 1980s.
(Emphasis added)

Suicide by two shots to the head? I thought this kind of thing only happened in Bill Clinton’s Arkansas. (Think I’m joking? Clinton’s favorite coroner, Fahmy Malak, once ruled that a decapitated man died of carbon monoxide poisoning.)

[Sacramento County] Coroner Robert Lyons said his office had been swamped with calls. “It’s unusual in a suicide case to have two shots,” he said, “but it has been done in the past, and it is in fact a distinct possibility.”

Unusual? Two self-inflicted shots to the head with a .38 caliber pistol? I’d say nearly miraculous.

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