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The original item was published from 4/6/2016 6:34:00 PM to 4/21/2016 12:00:06 AM.

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City of Midland News Release

Posted on: April 6, 2016

[ARCHIVED] Aggravated assault charge dropped following autopsy

The charge against a former aggravated assault suspect in Midland has been dismissed following an autopsy report.

Benjamin Moore, 36, was arrested March 26 by the Midland Police Department for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in connection with injuries sustained by his wife, 29-year-old Natasha Morris.

Police originally responded to Moore’s 911 call that his wife had committed suicide at approximately 12:11 a.m. on March 26 in the 700 block of West Michigan Avenue. Morris was found hanging by a power cord in their bedroom closet with life-threatening injuries. At the time of the arrest, the ligature marks on Morris’ neck appeared to be consistent with strangulation and did not appear to be the result of a self-inflicted hanging. Moore and Morris also had a history of domestic violence, and there were no indications that he had attempted to save her life before first responders arrived.

Moore was declared deceased on April 1 as a result of her injuries. MPD consulted with the District Attorney's office to discuss charges pending an autopsy of Morris’ body in Tarrant County. Preliminary autopsy results received Wednesday indicate that the trauma sustained to the tissues in Morris’ neck is believed by medical examiners to be consistent with self-inflicted hanging and not strangulation.

The District Attorney’s dismissal cites insufficient evidence to move forward with the case at this time as a result of the autopsy.

“At the time of Mr. Moore’s arrest, our officers had sufficient probable cause to detain him based on the evidence they had on hand,” said Police Chief Price Robinson. “With the news we received yesterday and in our ongoing conversation with the District Attorney’s Office, they arrived at the decision not to pursue this case.”

The autopsy will be complete pending a toxicology report and a review of evidence presented by detectives.

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Media Contact: Public Information Officer Sara Bustilloz

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