John Poindexter, owner of the West Texas Cibolo Creek Ranch where Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died some time on Saturday, is now making some remarkable statements to the press. Poindexter and another man as yet unidentified discovered Scalia’s dead body after the judge did not show up for breakfast. And the circumstances previously reported within and around this case are changing as details of the situation continue to emerge.
According to a report filed by MySanAntonio.com, Poindexter reported nothing unusual in Scalia’s demeanor during dinner on the evening before his death:
“He was seated near me and I had a chance to observe him. He was very entertaining. But about 9 p.m. he said, ‘it’s been a long day and a long week, I want to get some sleep,” recalled Houston businessman John Poindexter, who owns the 30,000-acre luxury ranch.
Next comes this revelation:
“We discovered the judge in bed, a pillow over his head. His bed clothes were unwrinkled,” said Poindexter.
As though that is not enough to raise some serious questions, and it is enough to raise serious questions which should be answered by a post mortem examination, Poindexter continued:
“He was lying very restfully. It looked like he had not quite awakened from a nap,” he said.
With a pillow over his head.
Scalia,79, did not have a pulse and his body was cold, and after consulting with a doctor at a hospital in Alpine, Poindexter concluded resuscitation would have been futile, He then contacted federal authorities, at first encountering a series of answering services because he was calling on a weekend.
Why? Why did Poindexter not simply call 9-1-1, which would have gotten him directly to a sheriff’s emergency dispatcher? Sheriff’s offices have 24/7 service.
This case landed in the hands of the U.S. Marshals. The U.S. Marshals’ function is not to conduct death investigations. That federal agency handles court security, serves fugitive warrants, and transports prisoners. That is what U.S. Marshals do.
“Ultimately they became available and handled it t superbly. They flew in by helicopter. They told me to secure the ranch, which I did until this morning,” he [Poindexter] said…
…Poindexter said he knew the other guests.
“All the guests were friends of mine, I paid for all of them. There were no politics, no jurisprudence in the slightest,” he said.
“This was strictly a group of friends that the judge decided to join. He was coming with his son who had to drop out for reasons I don’t’ know.
“It was an honor to have him. He was widely admired. There were no speeches. He wasn’t asked any hard questions, it was all about the outdoors and Texas, and what it’s like to being a Supreme Court Justice,” he said…
If Poindexter did pay for Scalia’s vacation expenses, that ought to raise some eyebrows, too.
The body of the Supreme Court justice was moved to an El Paso funeral home early Sunday. The body was driven from Marfa and arrived around 2:30 a.m. at Sunset Funeral Homes, according to spokesman Chris Lujan.
Which takes us to the next wrinkle in this story. Over at WND.com there is a copyrighted report in which Judge Cinderela Guevara, who pronounced the death by phone and decided no autopsy should be done, walked back her initial statement about Scalia’s death being due to a heart attack, opting this time to call it “natural causes”.
In a second WND.com report, in conflict with John Poindexter’s observations, Guevara said that Scalia complained of not feeling well during the evening dinner prior to his death, and that Scalia’s physician reported that the Supreme Court Justice was suffering from “chronic” medical problems.
But here’s the worst from the WND report:
CBS and the Associated Press report today that authorities, including Presidio County Judge Cinderela Guevara, are considering an autopsy for Judge Scalia, although toxicological testing could already be in doubt due to the delay. There is also a report that after arriving at 3:30 a.m. on Sunday, the Sunset Funeral Home embalmed Scalia’s remains, according to Chris Lujuan, a funeral home manager. The embalming process could destroy vital toxicology evidence.
That’s a very gentle way to put it.
Let’s clear this up: The embalming process includes high-pressure flushing all of the blood from the deceased’s body and replacing it with embalming fluid. Justice Scalia’s body is now completely filled with formaldehyde.
Any toxins or blood chemistry indicative of a heart attack (or a life-threatening assault) which would have been collected during a properly conducted autopsy went down the floor drain at the funeral home.
End of story.