Cumberland Times-News

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January 13, 2013

Missing man, 86, found dead

CUMBERLAND — The search for a missing Cash Valley Road man came to an end Saturday when he was found deceased in Mineral County with his vehicle that had caught fire, according to West Virginia State Police.

Billie Eugene Smith Sr., 86, of Cumberland was pronounced dead at the scene by Mineral County Medical Examiner Chris Gwinn after a call was received concerning a vehicle found along Schell Road off U.S. Route 50 by two hunters.

Smith had left his home around 2:30 p.m. Thursday but had failed to pick up a family member at the Country Club Mall at 5 p.m., according to Maryland State Police.

Last seen driving his 2002 Dodge Dakota, Smith’s whereabouts had been sought by state police since that time.

A public service call was received at 10:06 a.m. on Saturday by the West Virginia State Police barrack in Romney, W.Va., concerning the vehicle.

“No foul play is suspected. We are investigating this like we would any other case of its type,” said West Virginia State Police Trooper D.J. Paskowski.

Since an investigation is open, police would provide no further details about the scene of the incident.

Paskowski, along with Cpl. J.E. Whisner and Deputy First Class W.S. Weakley of the Mineral County Sheriff’s Department, responded to the call to conduct a criminal investigation, according to police.

Members of the Elk Garden Volunteer Fire Department also assisted at the site.

Factors of the case are currently under investigation and an autopsy had been ordered to determine the cause of death.

Law enforcement said no preliminary conclusion as to the cause of death has been determined.

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