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The original item was published from 8/8/2019 3:34:25 PM to 9/8/2019 12:00:02 AM.

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Sheriff's Office

Posted on: August 8, 2019

[ARCHIVED] Update to Death and Attempted Stabbing Near Gray Mountain

Hwy 89N Incident photo broken sunroof

Gray Mountain, Az – The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate the incident that occurred on Highway 89N near Gray Mountain on 08/05/19. Detectives have identified the male subject that died on scene as 35-year-old Richard Osburn from Oklahoma. A preliminary autopsy finding by the Coconino County Medical Examiner’s Office suggest that Osburn died from blunt force trauma to the head most likely sustained from the him falling from the vehicle onto Highway 89N. There were no other significant injures found on Osburn that would be responsible for or contribute to his death. 

The Department of Public Safety investigated the traffic/vehicle related portions of the incident due to this occurring on a state highway. Information obtained through both investigations showed that Osburn and his wife were traveling southbound on Highway 89N. Osburn was driving their vehicle when the vehicle traveled southbound in the northbound lane near the Sinagua Trading Post. Osburn eventually attempted to correct his position and traveled across the median of Highway 89N causing damage to the vehicle. Osburn stopped their vehicle and was approached by other civilian motorists who were attempting to assist him. Osburn exited his vehicle and began acting aggressive towards them. During this time the couple from Conway, Arkansas arrived to assist. Osburn approached them continuing with his aggressive behavior. The Arkansas couple got back into their vehicle, with the female victim driving, and started to leave the scene. While pulling back onto the highway they observed Osburn running at their vehicle and jumped onto the roof of the vehicle. The female victim accelerated onto Highway 89N southbound. Osburn, while on top of the vehicle, produced a fixed blade knife and smashed the glass sunroof out of the victim’s vehicle. Osburn then pulled his upper torso into the passenger compartment of the victim’s vehicle and began grabbing at the female driver. During this time, Osburn attempted to stab the female driver with his knife. All the while the male victim was attempting to defend himself and the female victim from the front passenger seat. Eventually, the male victim was able to push Osburn back out of the sunroof. The female victim initiated an evasive maneuver with the vehicle which caused Osburn to fall from the roof of the vehicle at speeds estimated between 60-70 miles an hour. At this point, it appears as though Osburn died as a result of the injury sustained when he impacted the roadway.

Obsurn’s wife was interviewed at the Sheriff’s Office in Flagstaff and has been cooperative with the investigation. She was released to a friend and Victim Witness services.

The investigation is still ongoing by Detectives with the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office.  

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