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Coroner: remains of man found in Woodburn woods now a homicide case

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WOODBURN, Ind. (WPTA21) -- In October last year, people walking in the woods in the 19000 block of Doehrman Road near Woodburn found skeletonized remains.

The Allen County coroner called in a team of anthropologists from the University of Indianapolis to collect the remains and analyze them.

In January, the remains were identified as 28-year-old Ryan Baughman, who had disappeared three years earlier.

Monday, the Allen County coroner ruled that he died from multiple gunshot wounds.

The Allen County coroner ruled 28-year-old Ryan Baughman died from multiple gunshot wounds.

"In their heart of hearts they've known for a long time that Ryan wasn't just a missing person, and so this was just kind of proof that their intuition was right," Amy Davis says.

Davis is one of the co-founders of JAVA, or Justice, Accountability and Victim Advocacy, and says she met Baughman's family at his funeral.

She spoke with us on their behalf.

"When we talked with Ryan's mother at the funeral, she was hopeful that they would call this a homicide eventually because if it's not declared a homicide, they're not investigating actively," Davis says.

Baughman had three children with his girlfriend, who died about a year ago.

Those children are reportedly being raised by their grandmother.

"That's the thing that breaks my heart is the children, knowing they don't have a mom or a dad," she says.

Davis hopes the homicide ruling will set some wheels in motion for the Baughman family to begin to heal.

"It's kind of hard to grieve when you don't have all the answers and have that justice that you hope for. You get distracted looking for justice and you don't always grieve properly," she says.

Allen County police declined to be interviewed, citing the ongoing investigation.

If you have any information about this case, call Crime Stoppers or the Allen County detective bureau.

"Now they've got the ruling, they can get out there and start investigating, and I hope for this family, they can get some closure," Davis says.

Ryan Baughman's death is now the 30th homicide of 2019.


The Allen County Coroner has ruled that the human remains that were found in a wooded area last October are now tied to a homicide case.

Someone discovered what officials believe to be human remains in the 1900 block of Doehrman Road in Woodburn in October 2019.

They were found about 150 feet off of Doehrman Road in a wooded area.

Based on the condition of the skeletal remains, officials said they appeared to have been there for at least six months.

Officials said the skeleton found in a wooded area in Woodburn in late October was that of a man who had been missing since 2017.

The coroner said the remains have been identified as 28-year-old Ryan A. Baughman.

Officials said Baughman was reported missing from Fort Wayne in February of 2017.

New on Monday, the coroner said the man had been shot multiple times, and his death was ruled Allen County's 30th homicide in 2019.

Officials said the body was sitting on a fallen log while leaning against a tree, about 150 feet off of Doehrman Road in a wooded area.

A team of anthropologists from the University of Indianapolis helped catalog and recover the remains.

Kayla Crandall

Kayla Crandall is an Emmy award-winning journalist. She serves as the Social Media and Digital Content Manager at WPTA. Follow her on Twitter @KaylerJayne.

Corinne Rose

Corinne Rose is a reporter for WPTA.

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