CASSVILLE, Mo. – After nine days, Dr. John Forsyth’s body was found with a gunshot wound in the Lost Bridge South area of Beaver Lake in Benton County, Arkansas.
John Forsyth’s brother, Richard Forsyth, says he spoke with authorities in Arkansas on May 31. Richard Forsyth says detectives told him they are investigating his brother’s death as a homicide.
OzarksFirst reached out to Benton County Sheriff’s Office, but the agency said they are not releasing any details about the investigation at this time.
On June 2, the coroner in Arkansas where Dr. John Forsyth’s body was found three days prior, told OzarksFirst reporters he expects autopsy results to take about 90 days.
Benton County Coroner Daniel Oxford said the Arkansas State Crime Lab is facing a backlog. The lab estimates results will take about 60 days, but Oxford said he’s still waiting on autopsy results sent to the lab in January and February. Other aspects of the investigation will continue while the coroner awaits autopsy results.
“He had no guns,” Richard Forsyth said. “I talked to him about that. He didn’t want to have a gun.”
Meanwhile, Missouri law enforcement is still investigating the missing person’s case to try to figure out how he went missing in the first place, according to Richard Forsyth.
“At this point, it looks like he was abducted and killed and thrown into a lake,” Richard said. “Just looking at it from my point of view, that’s what it seems like.”
Richard Forsyth said that his family is appreciative of the Cassville community’s support.
“The community support has been overwhelming. And we are so grateful for everyone who has supported us,” Richard said. “The, the outpouring of love, the messages of love and affection and concern and devastation are very reflective of the kind of person he was.”
John Forsyth was reported missing on May 21, 2023, after he didn’t show up for his shift at Mercy Hospital in Cassville. The hospital said in a statement, “We invite everyone to join us in praying for Dr. Forsyth’s family, our co-workers, and the entire community impacted by this tragedy. We are providing emotional and spiritual support to our co-workers through our employee assistance program, pastoral care team, and other resources.”
Joe Polker, representative of Mercy Hospitals
Richard Forsyth and the rest of John’s family are awaiting the results of his autopsy, but Richard says closure for the family can’t happen until they know what happened to their loved one.
“We need to get to the bottom of this,” Richard said. “We need to find out what happened. We’re not satisfied with just that he was found. This kind of barbaric behavior has to be uncovered. We, this has to be dealt with.”
Just hours before John’s body was found, Richard spoke in an interview about rumors circulating around his brother’s disappearance.
“We’ve gathered together a great deal of data sorting through what is potentially relevant or even factual has been challenging,” Richard said.
One rumor claimed that John’s disappearance may have to do with a court order for child support and alimony totaling nearly $20,000 are a motive in John’s disappearance. Richard, however, said that wasn’t the case.
“I talked to a lot of people [who would] know, and they said that that amount of money was not a concern,” Richard said.
Another unfounded popular rumor is one surrounding the cryptocurrency company Richard and John started. Richard said the idea that his brother’s disappearance has anything to do with the company is false.
Richard added there was one person who they believed was upset with John, but that individual was overseas and is confident that the isolated incident is not relevant to the investigation.
“I don’t know why my brother is missing. I don’t know why he would leave behind his wallet, his passport, his checkbook, his keys, and an unlocked car,” his brother Richard Forsyth says.
John’s family said they have been shown security footage showing a person they believe is John and another car around 7:15 a.m.
“We have the white vehicle leaving about 3 minutes after that and then 10 to 15 minutes after that, someone looking quite a bit like my brother, the image is a bit blurry, exiting his car,” Richard said. “The clothing he was wearing fits his last known description, [walked] around a bit and then walk away.”
After he was reported missing, Cassville police, along with several other agencies, searched using a thermal imaging drone and K9s. They found John’s car abandoned at the Cassville Aquatic Park with multiple phones, a laptop, and his wallet and passport inside, but no evidence pertaining to his disappearance.
John was found after a kayaker called 911 after finding a dead body on the bank of Beaver Lake on May 30, 2023. Benton County authorities confirmed the body was John’s the next day.
“We’re all very disturbed by these events, and some family has come in from out of town. We’ve been trying to support each other,” Richard said. “In a situation like this, you kind of learn that you can very easily forget self-care.”