Skeletal remains identified

Published 1:26 pm Thursday, August 12, 2010

The remains found near Poplarville Sunday night have been identified as Richard A. Swartz III, son of St. Tammany Parish 22nd Judicial District Court Division C Judge Richard Swartz Jr.

Richard Swartz III’s remains were found after 50 year-old Oscar K. Lindsey of Brandon, told New Orleans Police Department investigators that he knew the location of Swartz’s body. Swartz has been missing since July 27.

Identification of the body was achieved using surgical records from Richard Swartz III, 28, of Jackson, said Pearl River County Coroner Derek Turnage. Determining the actual cause of death will be difficult since the body lacks soft tissue.

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“It’s going to take time to determine the cause and manner of death,” Turnage said.

Turnage said an anthropologist is working to determine the cause of death. Turnage confirmed that the deceased is the son of Richard Swartz Jr.

Pearl River County Sheriff David Allison said the persistence of the Swartz family is what prompted the discovery of Swartz’s body. Allison said after Lindsey was pulled over in Jackson on Saturday while still driving Swartz’s car, Jackson Police notified the family that they found their missing son’s car. The department also notified the family who was driving the car when it was found. In response the family contacted Lindsey and met with him on Sunday morning. In the end Swartz’s family was able to bring Lindsey to the New Orleans Police Department, where he was turned over, Allison said.

According to an affidavit filed in the Pearl River County Justice Court after Lindsey told New Orleans Police Department investigators that he knew where Swartz’s body was the department contacted the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department. Key members of both departments then met at a location in Poplarville Sunday night and headed out to where the body was said to be. Once the investigators found Swartz’s skeletal remains Lindsey was then taken into custody and investigation into his involvement began.

It should be noted that the following information in the Justice Court affidavit end with the statements “during the interview with Mr. Lindsey his story of what happened changed numerous times,” and “evidence found at the scene does not support the accounts given by Mr. Lindsey.”

According to the affidavit during the department’s investigation they were told by Lindsey that he and Swartz were in New Orleans and had purchased Heroin. The affidavit states Lindsey said during the visit Swartz overdosed after shooting the Heroin into his veins. In an attempt to help Swartz feel better Lindsey and a black male, described only as “Peanut” in the affidavit, attempted to wake Swartz by walking him around, to no avail. Lindsey then stated he asked directions to a hospital.

After failing to find a hospital Lindsey said he decided to get on the interstate.

After getting on the interstate Lindsey stated two separate vehicles occupied by two black males each approached Swartz’s car, which Lindsey was driving. One of the cars got in front of the car while the other got behind and they motioned for Lindsey to follow. Lindsey said he followed until they reached Jesse Wells Road near Poplarville, where Swartz’s remains would later be found, the affidavit states.

Upon arrival at Jesse Wells Road Lindsey stated that the four black men picked Swartz up and took him into the woods, with Lindsey following behind. The affidavit states Lindsey said Swartz was still breathing when he was left in the woods by the four black males.

The affidavit states that Lindsey said he did not make any attempt, either before or after Swartz was left in the woods, to call emergency personnel and report what happened to Swartz. As a result Lindsey has been charged with manslaughter.

Wednesday Lindsey went before Justice Court Judge John Mark Mitchell, who set bond at $20,000 for the charge against Lindsey.