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A Fort Bragg paratrooper who went missing this summer was decapitated — but a cause of death can’t be determined because coroners could only examine his head.
The death of Enrique Roman-Martinez, 21, who was last seen alive on May 22 and whose remains washed up on a North Carolina beach 10 days later, has now been ruled a homicide — but it remains unclear how he died, the News & Observer said.
“While decapitation is, in and of itself, universally fatal, the remainder of the body in this case was not available for examination, and therefore potential causes of death involving the torso and extremities cannot be excluded,” an autopsy report said.
“A definitive cause of death cannot be determined, (but) the findings, in this case, are most consistent with death due to homicide,” the report by the Division of Forensic Pathology at East Carolina University Brody School of Medicine said, the outlet reported.
The report said there was evidence of “multiple chop injuries to the head,” and Roman-Martinez’s jaw had been broken in at least two places.
There was also no evidence of drugs in a toxicology report, the Observer said.
Roman-Martinez was a human resource specialist with the 82nd Airborne Division, and was camping with other paratroopers on Cape Lookout National Seashore in North Carolina when he went missing, Task & Purpose reported.
A 10-day search for him was suspended when his remains washed up on a nearby beach.
Last month, 82nd Airborne commander Major Gen. Christopher Donahue said on Twitter that Roman-Martinez died due to “senseless violence.”
The Army is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case but no suspects have been identified, the News & Observer reported.
The case is just the latest controversy for the embattled military base.
Last week, two men — Master Sgt. William Lavigne, 37, and Timothy Dumas, 44 — were found dead in a training area at the base.
Investigators said they suspected foul play in their deaths.
So far this year 31 service members have died at the massive North Carolina base, nearly half of them by suicide.
Last year, a Fort Bragg sergeant was convicted of federal charges that he was running a marriage mill that hooked up foreign nationals with U.S. Army soldiers.
In 2018, a soldier at the base was charged with kidnapping a 12-year-old girl.
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