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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Officials Rule Major Bashinsky's Death a Suicide

Law-enforcement officials are ruling the death of attorney Major Bashinsky a suicide, according to a report today on al.com.

Bashinsky was reported missing on March 3, and his body was discovered in a water hazard at Birmingham's Highland Park Golf Course on March 15. Sloan Y. Bashinsky Jr., Major's older brother who lives in Key West, Florida, reported on his blog that Major had been shot in the head at the golf course.

Authorities now say the wound was self-inflicted. Reports al.com:

Authorities today ruled the death of Major Bashinsky a suicide, according to Jefferson County Chief Deputy Coroner Pat Curry.

"All of our evidence supports that,'' Curry said.

Authorities said Bashinsky shot himself in the head, but tried to stage his death to look like murder.

Here is how authorities have pieced together the event:

The Mountain Brook father of four loosely bound his mouth with duct tape and his hands with rope before walking into a golf course pond and shooting himself.

Rope also was wrapped around parts of his body and was attached to a bottle, which contained a note that was similar to a note found in Bashinsky's abandoned car that was discovered three days after his disappearance.

A label off of a Golden Flake bag was stuck to the roof of his mouth.

There were no signs of a struggle against the tape or the rope.

Bashinsky's whereabouts during the 12 days he was missing remain missing. But al.com did report:

Investigators have recovered the gun believed to have been used in the death. They also think they know where Bashinsky bought the duct tape and rope on the same day he disappeared.

A clerk at that Birmingham hardware store told The Birmingham News he sold duct tape and rope to a man on that day. He said investigators have visited him, showed him a picture of Bashinsky and asked if that was who he sold it to.

The store worker said the picture was blurry and he would need to see a better photo.

Authorities today said the death certificate will be officially signed off as a suicide later this week.

A second dive search of the water hazard was conducted this morning. Reports al.com:

Investigators this morning found a set of Toyota car keys, a pair of scissors and a roll of tape in the pond at Highland Park Golf Course where the body of a missing Mountain Brook man was discovered earlier this month.

Divers from Birmingham police and Southern Skin Divers Supply, a local dive business whose owners are trained in artifact search and recovery, looked in the pond today for clues in the death of Ma­jor Bashinsky, a 63-year-old lawyer and financial adviser.

He disappeared March 3. His body was found in the pond on March 15. It is the second dive in connection with the Ba­shinsky's disappearance and death.

Evidence was retrieved from the pond during the first dive, but authorities haven't disclosed the nature of those items fished from the pond.

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