Corey Brown died of blunt force trauma after falling from communications tower, police say
Corey Brown, the 13-year-old Marshalltown boy who was found dead Sunday, died of blunt force trauma after he apparently fell from a communication tower, police said Wednesday.
Brown's body was found by a search team near the tower close to the 900 block of West Iowa Avenue in a secluded area on the city's west side, authorities said. He had suffered a significant head injury.
The tower, about a mile from Brown's home, is in an empty field behind buildings on the south side of the avenue. It's a few hundred feet north of U.S. Highway 30.
Brown went over a secured fence and climbed onto the tower before he fell from an undetermined distance, authorities said their preliminary investigation showed. Police again said no criminal activity was suspected in Brown's death.
The state medical examiner in Ankeny performed Brown's autopsy Tuesday. Toxicology results will not be available for as many as eight weeks, police said.
Temperatures dipped below zero three straight days after Brown disappeared. He left his parents’ home on the city's south side after they had a "disciplinary discussion" with him and took his phone away, Police Chief Michael Tupper said.
Tupper said Monday that he has heard "unfair" assumptions about some sort of big fight. He said there was no proof of an argument or anger between the young teen and his parents that night.
"I can't emphasize enough that this speculation about why he left ... it's not a fair depiction," Tupper said Monday. "Nothing extraordinary happened at home that caused this to occur."
When Brown did not return, a couple hundred people, many in snowsuits and winter boots, offered to help police in the search. But officials sent the volunteers home so the search could be handled by professionals.
Green ribbons were tied around trees across town and neighbors replaced porch lights with green bulbs in support of Brown. Green was the teenager's favorite color.
Residents said Brown's death was another blow to the Marshall County city of about 27,000 people after a twister plowed through town in July, damaging numerous buildings that included the downtown courthouse.
The Register's Anna Spoerre contributed to this report.