More details are emerging about the death of Bill Sparkman in Kentucky.
A part-time census worker found hanging in a rural Kentucky cemetery was naked, gagged and had his hands and feet bound with duct tape, said an Ohio man who discovered the body two weeks ago.
The word ”fed” was written in felt-tip pen on 51-year-old Bill Sparkman’s chest, but authorities have released very few other details in the case, such as whether they think it was an accident, suicide or homicide.
Jerry Weaver of Fairfield, Ohio, told The Associated Press on Friday that he was certain from the gruesome scene that someone killed Sparkman.
”He was murdered,” Weaver said. ”There’s no doubt.”
Weaver said he was in the rural Kentucky county for a family reunion and was visiting some family graves at the cemetery on Sept. 12 along with his wife and daughter when they saw the body.
”The only thing he had on was a pair of socks,” Weaver said. ”And they had duct-taped his hands, his wrists. He had duct tape over his eyes, and they gagged him with a red rag or something.”
It would be jumping to conclusions to assume that he was killed because he was working for the U.S. Census, even though his ID card was taped to his body. This part of Kentucky is known by law enforcement to have hidden marijuana fields and meth labs, so it could have been that Mr. Sparkman stumbled upon illegal activity while in the performance of his census duties. Whatever the reason, it’s a federal crime to murder a federal employee in the performance of his or her duties, so if the perpetrators thought they might be scaring off the feds with this gruesome warning, they were wrong.