Deaths of 4-year-old and family friend ruled a murder-suicide

COLUMBIA, Mo. – An autopsy has determined a 4-year-old boy and 37-year-old man found dead in rural Missouri last week died in a murder-suicide.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol said the Boone County Medical Examiner’s Office determined the boy, Bentlee Turner, died as a result of a single gunshot wound to the head. The adult, Monty Barton, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

The autopsies were conducted at University Hospital in Columbia.

Turner and Barton were found dead on Valentine Ford Road near Missouri Route A in Gasconade County, just after 11:30 p.m. on Monday, September 16, a few hours after the 4-year-old had been reported missing.

According to state police, local authorities in Belle, Missouri alerted state investigators to the missing boy just after 8:10 p.m.

The boy had reportedly been with Barton since the morning hours of Sunday, September 15.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.