The body of 24-year-old Jamison Stephens, a 2007 Russell County High School graduate, was found in the back seat of his pickup truck at the Grider Apartments beside Lindsey Wilson College in Columbia on Tuesday morning, June 4, according to Adair County Coroner Todd Akin.
The Columbia Police Department and Kentucky State Police are investigating the incident after a groundskeeper at Lindsey Wilson made the discovery of Stephens, of Russell Springs, around 11:30 a.m.
Akin said that the body had likely been in the back seat of the black Dodge pickup for four to five days and noted that the likely reason the body was not discovered earlier was due to the heavy tint on the vehicle’s windows.
He said residents of the Grider apartment building reported a “foul smell,” upon which a groundskeeper at the college came over to investigate. After discovering the body, police were called to the scene to extract Stephens’ body, which was sent to the state Medical Examiner’s Office in Louisville for an autopsy.
Autopsy results were inconclusive on Wednesday, June 5, but the coroner’s office is awaiting toxicology results before an official cause of death can be determined. Akin says that toxicology results will arrive in four to six weeks and that they have ruled out any foul play in the case.
Stephens was a commuter student from Russell County who had just finished up his sophomore year at LWC. He was taking summer classes at the college, according to LWC officials.
Akin said investigators also found a receipt from FiveStar Food Mart in the truck dated Thursday, May 30. This was the last time Stephens was seen alive, according to Akin.
Stephens was a veteran of the United States Army. He is survived by his parents, Carl and Lisa Bridgeman Stephens of Russell Springs.
The murder trial for Christopher Allman has been delayed until April 28, 2014.
Allman is charged with murder for the June 2012 rape and strangulation of 31-year-old Sarah Hart of Jamestown.
The trial date had been set for September 30 of this year but at Circuit Court on Monday, June 3, Judge Vernon Miniard, Jr. granted the delay after the motion was made by Allman’s defense team on grounds that they needed more time to prepare for a potential death penalty case.
Allman continues to be held in the Russell County Detention Center.