Spokane, WA – The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has determined that an anesthesiologist who was found dismembered and burned to death in his backyard died by accident.
Deputies responded to Rex Porter’s Dishman Hills home in the 2800-block of South Park Lane near the Iller Creek Conservation Area on April 9 to conduct a welfare check, KXLY reported.
Neighbors called police and said a car had been sitting in the driveway of Porter’s home with a door open for a couple of days.
Deputies found broken glass when they arrived and searched the house, KXLY reported.
They found Porter’s 29-year-old mentally-disabled son Derek in the basement with a cut on his foot and blood on his pants and initially believed that he was a squatter, the Spokesman-Review reported.
Once they figured out who he was, the man was transported to the hospital for treatment.
Deputies were ready to leave the residence when a neighbor confronted them and said the father had to be there because he was his son’s caretaker, according to the Spokesman-Review.
So they searched the 11-acre property for 61-year-old Rex Porter and found his remains in the backyard.
Police said some of his limbs had been removed but did not reveal how it had been done, the Spokesman-Review reported.
Court documents showed deputies found a burned head and torso in the fire pit, and partially-burned legs north and south of that area, KREM reported.
Investigators seized footage from surveillance cameras around the house but police have not said what was seen on those videos.
Police have not named Derek Porter as a suspect, the Spokesman-Review reported.
Despite what appeared to be a bizarre and violent crime scene, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office completed and closed the investigation into Rex Porter’s death remarkably fast.
“We found no evidence of any criminal acts leading up to his death,” Spokane County Sheriff’s Corporal Mark Gregory told the Spokesman-Review.
The medical examiner determined that the doctor died from cardiac dysrhythmia due to ingesting a toxic mix of alcohol and prescription drugs.
Rex Porter had alcohol, sertraline, trazadone, and ziprasidone in his system when he died, the Spokesman-Review reported.
Those medications are usually prescribed to treat a slew of mental disorders including depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.