Homicide investigation: Body of Pasco man, 33, found off Bateman Road

Benton County
Benton County Sheriffs Office

4 P.M. UPDATE:

Detectives have reached the family of the homicide victim to tell them he is deceased, and have released his name: Hector Cortez-Ballardo of Pasco. He was 33 years old, the sheriff’s office said.

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ORIGINAL ARTICLE:

BENTON COUNTY, Wash. — A man turned up dead off the side of a road in Benton County on Tuesday. Now county authorities believe another person killed him, making this a homicide case.

“Detectives are now investigating this case as a homicide,” the Benton County Sheriff’s Office posted to Facebook, updating a previous post. “The victim is an adult male from the Tri-Cities.”

Investigators say they were able to identify the deceased on Wednesday morning. Now they are trying to notify his next of kin. After that, the sheriff’s office or coroner’s office plans to release the victim’s name.

Benton County Chief Deputy Coroner Dennis Morris first confirmed with KAPP-KVEW on Wednesday morning that the body found on Tuesday off of Bateman Road was that of a male. An autopsy has been scheduled for next week.

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A postal service employee who was delivering mail made the discovery in the area of Bateman Road near Bofer Canyon Rd and SR 397, the sheriff’s office said.

“Anyone with information should contact Detective CJ. Connor at 509-735-6555 EXT 7201 or Det. Sgt. C. Trevino at 509-735-6555 EXT 7205.”

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Bateman Road was closed for several hours on Wednesday while detectives processed the scene. We’re working to bring you more updates on the investigation.

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