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Coroner: Kidnapping suspect shot ‘at least’ five times

Published: Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013 10:53 a.m. CDT

(MCT) SAN DIEGO — James Lee DiMaggio — the man who was killed by FBI agents in the Idaho wilderness after allegedly kidnapping 16-year-old Hannah Anderson — was shot at least five times in the head and chest, an Idaho coroner said Wednesday. 

DiMaggio, who is also suspected of killing Hannah’s mother and 8-year-old brother before fleeing San Diego County, was armed with at least one weapon when an FBI tactical team moved in on his campsite near Morehead Lake 75 miles north of Boise, Idaho, on Saturday.

An investigation into the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of DiMaggio remained ongoing, but authorities this week said the 40-year-old fired at least once, although they declined to say whether he fired the first shot. 

Valley County Coroner Nathan Hess said DiMaggio died at the scene. A final report would take six to eight weeks to complete, he added.

DiMaggio’s body was cremated, said Cathy Griffin, a spokeswoman for the DiMaggio family.

DiMaggio and Hannah were found by an FBI search team just a few miles from where the two were spotted by horseback riders on Aug. 7, officials said.

Authorities have offered few other details about the shooting, but said they moved in after DiMaggio and the teen had separated a safe distance.

A pair of U.S. marshals in a surveillance plane spotted them at a campsite. A team was dropped in from a distance to avoid alerting DiMaggio and hiked two hours in the steep terrain. 

The killing ended a tense, multistate manhunt that began Aug. 4, when firefighters found the bodies of Hannah’s mother and younger brother at DiMaggio’s burning home, east of San Diego.

The girl’s disappearance prompted missing-child Amber Alert text messages to the public in several western states.

Hannah has since returned to San Diego County and is undergoing counseling.  

At a news conference Monday, San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore said Hannah was “doing as well as can be expected” after her ordeal.

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Wells reported from Los Angeles, Perry from San Diego.

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©2013 Los Angeles Times

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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