UPDATE: Death of WVU lecturer still under investigation

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UPDATE (5/16/2019 3 p.m.):

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Morgantown police have yet to rule out homicide in the death of Elizabeth Ann Leo, Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston said Thursday afternoon.

Elizabeth Leo, 34, died last week.  An employee from Lutheran Campus Ministry discovered Leo last Friday morning.

The West Virginia University Police released information prematurely that Leo’s death had been ruled accidental based on a press release draft, according to the Morgantown Police Department. 

Officers said, without an autopsy report, Leo’s death could not be ruled accidental. All unattended deaths are classified as homicide investigations until ruled otherwise, police added.

The department is waiting on the autopsy report from the medical examiners office. 


UPDATE (5/16/2019 10:30 a.m.):

The death of a WVU lecturer whose body was found behind the Lutheran Campus Ministry on University Avenue has been ruled accidental, according to the West Virginia University Police Department.

Elizabeth Ann Leo was discovered dead on Friday, May 10, by a staff member. Following a death investigation, WVU Police announced that Leo’s death is believed to be due to an accidental fall. Officers said it is believed that Leo had gone onto the fire escape or rooftop to smoke a cigarette, when at some point she slipped and fell approximately 12-15 feet onto the sidewalk below.

The fall resulted in a traumatic head injury that caused Leo’s death, according to police.


UPDATE (5/11/2019 3:49 p.m.):

Officials have identified the body found behind a place of worship on W.V.U.’s Downtown campus as a lecturer for the school’s English department.

The body of 34 year-old Elizabeth Ann Leo was discovered by a staff member of the Lutheran Campus Ministry behind the chapel on Friday morning.

A university spokesperson confirms with 12 News that Leo was scheduled to teach an online course this summer.

A death investigation is now underway.

The university released the following statement:

“Our thoughts are with Elizabeth’s family during this difficult time, and our Carruth Center is available for students, faculty or staff as our campus community mourns her loss.”

Anyone with information on this investigation is asked the call the Morgantown Police Department at 304-284-7522.


ORIGINAL (5/10/2019):

The Morgantown Police Department is conducting an investigation after a body was discovered Friday morning, according to a press release.

The press release said police responded to the Lutheran Campus Ministry on University Avenue at about 7:30 after a staff member discovered a woman’s body behind the building, which is near the intersection of University Avenue and Hough Street.  Upon arriving on the scene, detectives from the Morgantown Police Department processed and canvassed the area for more information, according to the release.

Police identified the woman as Elizabeth Leo, 34, of Morgantown.  Her body will be taken to the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Charleston, where an autopsy will be performed, according to the release.

The Morgantown Police Department has not released any further details.  It is asking that anyone with information call 304-284-7522.

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