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The Bonne Terre Police Department and the Bonne Terre Fire Department were called to the Bonneville Motel at 1:57 p.m. Tuesday for an unresponsive/unconscious person.

The original dispatch indicated that there was an unrecognizable smell in the room of the motel, which is located at 1017 Route K in Bonne Terre.

“I initially called the fire department because I didn’t know what we were walking into,” said Bonne Terre Police Chief Doug Calvert. “Then they canceled the fire engine and requested a pumper instead to fumigate the room because we didn’t know if there was a meth lab in there or not. Then they canceled that and said that we didn’t need air packs.”

Calvert said a 53-year-old white male was deceased upon arrival. He said the man was found by motel staff.

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“He was possibly deceased for at least a couple of days and there was obvious down time,” said Calvert. “County Coroner Jim Coplin was called and he took possession of the body and transported it to the county morgue for an autopsy.”

Calvert said they found medications and items in the room that belonged to the gentleman that passed away. He added that they are still trying to make notifications, but they aren’t having any luck so far on family or next of kin.

“We don’t suspect any foul play at this time,” said Calvert. “However, an autopsy will be conducted. There was nothing illegal found in the room that leads us to believe different. I believe the man may have passed away of natural causes, but to be sure we are going to do the full autopsy and toxicology.”

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Renee Bronaugh is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-518-3617 or rbronaugh@dailyjournalonline.com

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