4-year-old and family friend found dead in rural Missouri ruled murder-suicide

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HERMANN, Mo. — Officials confirmed to KTVI that an autopsy has classified the deaths of a 4-year-old boy and the 37-year-old family friend the child was with as a murder-suicide.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol said the child, Bentlee Turner, was reported missing Monday, Sept. 16 from the town of Belle, about 100 miles (161 kilometers) southwest of St. Louis. The child had reportedly been with a man, Monty Barton, described as a family friend since Sunday morning.

The patrol said the man's vehicle was found in rural Gasconade County just a few hours after the boy was reported missing. The bodies of the man and the child were found nearby.

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