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Man Who Died from Burns Identified

Posted at 8:34 AM, Apr 03, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-03 08:40:26-04

KENT COUNTY, Mich. – A man who died after suffering burns to more than 90% of his body has been identified.

The Kent County Sheriff’s Department says the victim, Inez Joseph Tates, 55, died as the result of suicide.  He has ties to the Jackson, Miss., area, but has no permanent address due to his occupation as a truck driver.  He has no known family or friends in West Michigan.

Police believe he was here to pick up a semi truck.

His death is the result of an incident that happened on March 30.  Deputies say a driver first noticed a grass fire off of U.S. 131 near the Post Drive exit.  The driver got out to see what was going on, and noticed Tates on fire.

They tried to put the flames out with dirt before crews arrived.  Tates later died at the hospital.