Darlington woman's death ruled homicide

Officials say the body of Dorothy Bumgarner was found in a vehicle parked near this building. | Source: Ken Baker
Officials say the body of Dorothy Bumgarner was found in a vehicle parked near this building. | Source: Ken Baker

DARLINGTON, SC (WMBF) – The death of a 56-year-old woman found on Saturday has been ruled a homicide, according to Darlington County Coroner J Todd Hardee.

Dorothy Bumgarner, of Darlington, was found dead in a car near a dilapidated building at the 1400 block of North Main Street Saturday afternoon, according to the Darlington County Sheriff's Office. She was last seen alive at around 3:40 a.m. Saturday morning.

Sheriff Byrd said vehicle, Bumgarner's Body was found in was not drivable, because of its condition.

Investigators said Bumgarner was either placed inside of the car or she got into before her death occurred.

Before Tuesday, investigators thought they were just looking at a death investigation.

"We started a death investigation, at that time we did not know there was anything suspicious or not. It was just unusual to find someone in that position in that time of day,"Darlington County Sheriff Wayne Byrd said.

Sheriff Byrd says investigators did notice injuries to Bumgarner's body when they arrived on scene.

"She had some, what I would call minor injuries. They were of the nature that could have been accidental, could have been something else. You just could not tell at that time," Byrd said.

Her body was sent to the Medical University of South Carolina for an autopsy, which was performed Tuesday. The autopsy showed wounds on her body that led to her death, but officials are not specifying what the wounds were.

Coroner Hardee ruled the death a homicide, and the incident is under investigation by the Coroner's Office and Sheriff's Office.

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