Ocean City Today
https://oceancitytoday.villagesoup.com/p/1675390

Death of woman buried in sand ruled accidental

By Katie Tabeling | Aug 02, 2017
Photo by: via Facebook Ashley O'Connor

(Aug. 4, 2017) The death of a 30-year-old woman who was found buried in the sand Monday morning has been ruled accidental.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore determined that Ashley O’Connor, 30, of Plano, Texas died of asphyxia due to suffocation. Ocean City Police Public Affairs Specialist Lindsay Richard said O’Connor had suffocated in sand.

“We don’t know how she was covered in sand. That’s what our investigators are trying to find out,” Richard said.

O’Connor’s body was uncovered on the beach near Second Street around 6:30 a.m. on Monday morning. A citizen reported seeing a forearm and a bit of hair sticking out of the sand to a city employee, who then call the Ocean City Police Department.

O’Connor’s body was found in a sizable hole near Second Street. Police do not believe that the forearm and hair were uncovered after a beach sweeper had cleaned the area. The beach sweeper, a large vehicle resembling a tractor, start cleaning the sand around 11 p.m. and ended around 7 a.m.

It remains to be determined if O’Connor fell into the hole or climbed in of her own accord, according to police statements.

“She was seen by her parents walking on the beach alone around Second Street around 2 a.m.,” Richard said.

O’Connor’s parents, who were visiting Ocean City with her, filed a missing person’s report early Monday morning. By then, the body had already been discovered.

Segments of the Second Street beach were closed for hours while the Ocean City Police Forensic Services Unit worked to recover the body from the sand with assistance from Maryland State Police crime scene technicians. The body was removed around 4:15 p.m.

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