Bond: Man's death likely from 'natural causes'

March 11, 2013

The Pettis County Sheriff’s office is investigating the death of a man found outside his home just after noon Saturday.

Deputies responded Saturday after receiving reports of a body discovered at Happy Acres Trailer Park in the 22000 block of U.S. Highway 65, where they found Ivan Laster Sr., 61, dead at the scene.

Sheriff Kevin Bond told the Democrat on Sunday that the initial investigation suggests that Laster died from natural causes, but “since we are dealing with an unattended body we are trying to rule out if a crime occurred.”

“I think we are dealing with a natural cause of death,” Bond said. “We continued our investigation (Saturday) night and were able to gather more information. We will have to wait on autopsy results.”

Bond said the Pettis County Coroner’s office plans to conduct the autopsy today, with preliminary results available this afternoon.

He said while some information, such as toxicology tests, may take longer to complete, the autopsy should be able to determine quickly if Laster was the victim of a crime.

“By (Monday) afternoon I think we can get some preliminary results back and we should be able to tell if any violence occurred,” Bond said.

Investigators released a CrimeStoppers report on the death on Saturday and were able to make contact with a number of people who had seen Laster before his death.

“That (CrimeStopper release) was productive,” Bond said. “We were able to talk with people who had contact with him the night before. Putting that out was helpful and we did get some results from it,” Bond said.

Anyone with information on the recent whereabouts of Ivan Laster Sr. or this investigation is asked to call the Pettis County Sheriff’s Office at 827-0052 or the CrimeStoppers Tips Hotline at 827-TIPS (8477).