Tribune-Courier General Manager
A Gilbertsville man was struck and killed while walking along U.S. 68 near Palma early Sunday morning.
Matthew Bonds, 25, had reportedly been unable to find a ride home from a friend’s house and had decided to walk. He had walked east along the side of the road about a mile and a half before being struck near McKenzie Park Subdivision.
The Marshall County Sheriff’s Office received a call at around 1:30 a.m. Sunday indicating a body was seen lying in a ditch along the roadway. Deputies found Bonds’ body.
He was pronounced dead by Deputy Coroner Curt Curtner, who said it appeared Bonds died of blunt force trauma. An autopsy was being performed in Madisonville and at press time the results were not yet available.
The sheriff’s office had asked for the public’s assistance on Sunday looking for a 2003 Dodge Caravan, based on broken pieces of a headlight and side mirror debris at the site.
A tip led deputies to a home at 118 Yacht Drive in Gilbertsville to investigate a vehicle matching the police description. The vehicle was located and impounded. Owners Jerry Elrod, 65, and Tamera Elrod, 58, were called into the sheriff’s office for questioning.
Jerry Elrod told police he was driving while his wife delivered newspapers for The Paducah Sun and thought he had hit a deer. Elrod said he got out of his vehicle to see if the animal was still alive, but found nothing.
Detective Dan Melone said shoe tracks found in the grass showed Elrod had searched within 100 feet of where Bonds’ body was before leaving the scene.
Elrod told police he continued on to the Five Star in Draffenville to inspect damage to his vehicle, then finished the paper route with his wife before returning home. Elrod told police he had gone back to the scene approximately seven hours later, still looking for the deer.
Melone said in a press release Elrod and his wife learned they had struck a person rather than a deer while at the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office Sunday afternoon.
The case will be submitted to the Grand Jury. No charges have been filed at this time.