Mar 9, 2023
Refugio Rodriguez, part 3: Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agrees to review investigation as national expert weighs in
Expert insight into the death investigation of Refugio Rodriguez reveals critical errors in police procedure that compromised key evidence collected from the crime scene and failed to document critical details related to the hose found around Rodriguez’s neck.
The review by a retired crime scene investigator comes as police in Montevideo, Minnesota, have referred the Rodriguez case to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension after a series of Forum News Service investigations revealed oversights and questionable decisions in the original police investigation.
Rodriguez was found dead in Chinhinta Park in Montevideo, Minnesota, on Sept. 20, 2020. The initial incident report indicated Rodriguez was found hanging from a tree by a passerby. He was, in fact, found on his knees, with a hose, attached to a tree, wrapped around his neck. Montevideo police later ruled the death a suicide and closed the case .
Sal Rastrelli, a retired crime scene investigator with more than 30 years of experience, specializes in cases involving suicides and homicides. He was provided with investigative documents obtained by Forum News Service related to the death of Rodriguez, including the police report, medical examiner’s report and crime scene images.
Full story, written by Trisha Taurinskas, can be found here. https://www.inforum.com/news/the-vault/national-expert-weighs-in-on-refugio-rodriguezs-death-investigation-as-new-image-of-body-surfaces