FLAGSTAFF—The body of the man who was found deceased in Oak Creek Canyon on May 27,2013 has been identified as forty-seven year old Stephen Buck of Washington state.
On May 27, 2013 at about 4:13 pm an individual who was hiking in Oak Creek Canyon called a Coconino County Sheriff Emergency Dispatcher on his cell phone to report that he and a companion hiker were exploring the canyon when they found a deceased male subject. The caller’s location was determined to be off of State Route 89A in the area of mile post 379.5. Upon their arrival Deputies made contact with the reporting party and found the body to be that of an adult male, that was lying face down behind some trees by a creek. The subject was fully clothed and investigators did not observe any signs of injures or blunt trauma that would be consistent with an assault or some other manner of foul play.
Detectives found several types of controlled substances or narcotics in close proximity to the body. Investigators found a key for a U-Haul vehicle in a pocket of clothing worn by the deceased individual and matched it to a U-Haul van that was parked along SR 89A. The van was reported as stolen by the renting agency and investigators learned that there was an active US Marshal Federal Warrant for the deceased subject that was initiated by the Department of Drug Enforcement in California.
Detectives are considering the possibility that the individual died as the result of a self-induced drug overdose. This investigation is being continued.