Kirby Porter death investigation

By Curt Autry - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

HANOVER, VA (WWBT) – We're still trying to piece together the circumstances surrounding the death of former Hanover County Commonwealth's Attorney Kirby Porter.

NBC12 has been in contact with National Park Rangers in Arizona and although they won't confirm it - it "would appear" the long-time prosecutor died in the Grand Canyon.

In his two terms as commonwealth's attorney, Kirby Porter quickly gained a reputation as a hard-nosed, but fair prosecutor...and during his tenure some very big cases were dumped in his the 2002 beltway sniper, John Allen Muhammad, went on a shooting spree along the I-95 corridor - that included the wounding of a man outside an Ashland steakhouse.

But in 2007, Porter would lose his attempt at a 3rd term in office at which time he went into private practice in Hanover.

And although U.S. Park Rangers in Grand Canyon, Arizona won't release a name it would appear Porter lost his life sometime Sunday, in the Grand Canyon. Monday night - U.S. Park Rangers contacted the Hanover Sheriff's Office asking for assistance in contacting Porter's next of kin.

It was that very day, rangers discovered the body of a man at the base of Moran Point - on Sunday - witnesses say they saw him "climb over a retaining wall, and then - he laid down at the edge of the canyon rim." The body was found some 250 feet below.

Shannon Marcak, with the National Park Service, confirmed that the area where the body was found is very remote. The remains have been flown to a nearby town, to be examined by a medical examiner who will make a positive identification.

Copyright 2010 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.