Coroner releases name of man found hanged in Batesville Monday

Published 6:27 pm Monday, July 10, 2023

Panola County Coroner Gracie Grant-Gulledge late Monday made public the identity of a man found hanging in a tree on the side of I-55 just inside the Batesville City limits.

Scott Stephen Shaw, 40,  died of asphyxiation caused by hanging, Grant-Gulledge ruled after the body was discovered by workers mowing the interstate embankments about 11 a.m. Monday. The coroner confirmed Shaw was carrying a Texas photo ID at the time of his death, but had no money or any personal possessions when found.

She initially withheld his identification until relatives in Florida could be contacted. Relatives, including Shaw’s father and children, described markings that confirmed his identify over the phone Monday. Grant-Gulledge said the area had no signs of foul play.

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Early investigation revealed the deceased was believed to be walking in the Dogwood Heights subdivision area over the weekend. That subdivision is adjacent to the interstate on the west side. The body was found on the east side of the highway, just north of the Eureka Rd., overpass bridge.

Batesville Chief of Police Kerry Pittman said the body was found in the thin scope of trees that separate I-55 northbound and Pine Lodge Rd. BPD has jurisdiction along both sides of the interstate from the Eureka Rd. bridge to north of Love’s Travel Stop, all part of the City of Batesville.

Pittman said the body could not be seen by passing motorists on the interstate, but was visible to mowers working on the embankment. The chief confirmed the man was found hanging with a standard rope, and did not appear to have been at the scene more than a few hours.

Reports indicate the man had no relatives in, nor had ever been a resident of, Panola County, although he had been recently arrested in a neighboring county. What those charges were was not clear at the time of publication.