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Longboat spa death ruled a suicide

MELISSA REID
Associate Publisher
mreid@lbknews.com

Lori Martin

According to the Longboat Key Police Department, Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office and the District 12 Medial Examiner’s Office, the Lori Martin death has been determined a suicide.

It was in the late afternoon on Jan. 23 when 54-year-old Martin’s body was found in the Longboat Key Moorings sauna. Police have been working on the case in the months since then, trying to establish whether the death was a homicide or suicide. Police Chief Pete Cumming was waiting on a final toxicology report and DNA tests from the medical examiner’s office of Dr. Russell Vega.

Cumming said he understood the frustration it caused the community not knowing the cause of her death for such an extended period, but the authorities needed to ensure every sample of blood, DNA collected and physical evidence pointed in the same direction. In short, Cumming stated all pointed to suicide through self-inflicted stab wounds, and there was no sign of a struggle. Cumming said only Martin’s blood was present in the spa and the knife used was found with the deceased. No suicide note has been located.

The self-inflicted stab wounds police say were the result of a ‘frenzied’ state Martin was in after taking the large dose of Benadryl in the sauna.

According to police, Martin had a toxic level of Benadryl in her system, although it had not completely entered her bloodstream and was mainly still in her stomach. It is not known how many pills Martin took, however an empty bottle of Benadryl was found next to her in the sauna.

According to the police department, there were nine lethal stab wounds that would not have been lethal the moment they were inflicted, however would cause excessive bleeding. There were also hesitation wounds police said were consistent with a person stabbing themselves.

Lori’s husband, David Martin, was at the Costco the day of Lori’s death. Chief Cumming confirmed there was indisputable evidence that David Martin was at Costco.

“One of the hardest parts during the investigation was knowing things that I could not say. When people would ask me if they were safe, and the best I could say is that ‘Nobody is at risk,’” said Chief Cumming.

According to police, Lori Martin left the boat at the Moorings that she shared with her husband around 11 a.m. on Jan. 23 and her body was discovered at about 5 p.m. in the afternoon in the sauna.

The Medical Examiner estimated she died between 12 noon and 2 p.m. on Jan. 23. Both she and her husband were engineers from Ohio who had retired and were planning a trip according to her husband, to Nova Scotia this summer.

David Martin told Longboat Key News in March that he is was absolutely sure Lori’s death was not a suicide and referred to his deceased wife as “the most incredible person.”

He said that more than 1,000 people attended her wake and he is now spending his time grieving and seeking answers, as is their three sons and Lori’s parents who live in Sarasota.

“She took care of me and I took care of her. We loved each other more than you can imagine, and I’ve been going to grief counseling, reading books and trying to stay in the moment,” said Martin.

Lori Martin received a Bachelor’s Degree from Youngstown University in 1986 where she majored in Chemistry and Math. She was born on Feb. 9, 1963 in Niles, Ohio and worked in the engineering field, retiring in 2007 as a supervisor in product engineering.

In 1992, Lori Martin married Dave, and built and remodeled homes and in 2010, purchased a motor yacht, Phase II, and began cruising the intercoastal waters of Florida. The couple moved aboard the yacht full-time and that led the couple to the Sarasota and Longboat Key area.

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2 Responses for “Longboat spa death ruled a suicide”

  1. Richard Decker says:

    Lori did NOT commit suicide, period!! This is a Long Boat cover-up to cover or protect the “ALMIGHTY RICH RESIDENTS.”

  2. Pat Stefano says:

    Unbelievable! Couldn’t you own up to the truth. Just say you can not irrefutably say suicide and keep it an ongoing investigation? I firmly believe the Longboat Key authorizes are more concerned about protecting the reputation of the upscale community and not the people of Longboat Key. Shame on you! #justiceforLori

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