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Deceased man from Leesburg a suicide

Photo by J.D. Sumner

Photo by J.D. Sumner

ALBANY, Ga. -- A preliminary autopsy led authorities to conclude that a Leesburg man found deceased in an Albany motel Tuesday was a suicide, Dougherty County Coroner Emma Quimbley said.

The body of Matthew Edwards, 51, was found by Hampton Inn employees in room 144 just before noon Tuesday.

"He died of a self-inflicted wound," Quimbley said. "We don't know if he used a knife or a razor."

Quimbley added that the wound could be described as a puncture to the neck. The neck is home to the carotid artery, which carries essential blood flow to the face and brain.

"There was no suicide note," Albany Police Department spokeswoman Phyllis Banks said. "The preliminary autopsy report helped with the cause-of-death conclusion."

Edwards' 1989 Mitsubishi Montero SUV was parked near the room off Westover Boulevard. Edwards is the second suicide of a Lee County resident in Albany in the last two weeks.

Last week, the body of Jeffrey Mark Smallridge, 47, was found lying in a grassy area near the River Walk trail by the Georgia Power hydroelectric dam. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.