Ind. Man Was Found Dead in Ditch, and Prosecutors Say Wife May Have Poisoned Him with Mushrooms
A woman walking her dog along a desolate stretch of road came upon the body of David Fouts, a successful tech employee whose strange death perplexed police until now
When technology consultant David Fouts was found dead in a ditch on a rural Indiana road in April, investigators were baffled about how the 50-year-old got there, and how he died.
Just days before his body was found, the avid cyclist and longtime dog lover who’d adopted four greyhounds told his stepdaughter he wanted to buy bikes for her two children, saying he wanted to put them together himself to make sure the kids were safe when they rode them, the Indianapolis Star reports.
Everything seemed fine, the stepdaughter, Carrie Lee Gentry, told the Star.
“Nothing out of the ordinary,” she said about Fouts, a senior consultant at tech giant Salesforce in Indianapolis.
On April 24, a woman walking her dog on a desolate patch of Overdorf Road in Noblesville in Hamilton County found the decomposing body of a man later identified as Fouts, Fox 59, reports.
He had cuts on his hands and residue from duct tape on his wrists and ankles — but there were no other outward signs of foul play, Fox 59 reports.
Linkedin David Fouts
An autopsy showed that Fouts’ body had been moved after he died, but gave little indication of how he died, the Star reports.
"It's a real head-scratcher," Coroner John Chaflin told the Star in April.
On Friday, after a months-long investigation, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office announced that Fouts’ wife, Katrina Fouts, 54, of Pendleton, and longtime family friend Terry Hopkins, 64, of Richmond, had been arrested and charged in connection with the slaying.
Katrina Fouts is charged with murder, conspiracy to commit murder, false informing and failure to report a corpse.
Hamilton County Sheriff's Office Katrina Fouts
Hopkins, a retired police officer, is charged with murder, conspiracy to commit murder and failure to report a corpse.
The toxicology report was inconclusive, but newly released charging documents show authorities believe the most likely cause of death is from chunks of poisonous mushrooms, which were found in his stomach, Fox 59, CBS4 Indy, and the Star report.
"There was a poisonous agent in his stomach that, if untreated, will produce death,” the coroner told the Star.
Hamilton County Sheriff's Office Terry Hopkins
Investigators allege they found a screenshot of information about poisonous mushrooms on Katrina Fouts’ phone, the charging documents show, CBS4 Indy reports.
Katrina Fouts allegedly failed to report that her husband was missing or try to contact her husband after he vanished in April, say investigators in the charging documents, Fox 59 reports.
Investigators allege they found DNA evidence on David Fouts’ shirt linking Hopkins, a longtime family friend, to Fouts’ death, an affidavit shows, the Star reports.
He allegedly bought several suspicious items including duct tape, the affidavit says, the Star reports.
Hamilton County Pathologist Thomas Sozio wrote that “mushrooms in the decedent’s stomach contents which were identified as Leucocybe connatum as the basis for the cause and manner of death," the Star reports.
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Hopkins, who Katrina Fouts called "Pops," has known her for her whole life and helped care for her father, investigators said, the Star reports.
Hopkins called her "MKFAM" (my kid from another mother), investigators said.
Prosecutors did not give a motive.
Katrina Fouts and Hopkins have not yet entered pleas. Katrina Fouts' attorney had no comment. No attorney is listed in court records for Hopkins.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS or Detective Greg Lockheart at 317-773-1282.