Found Deceased TN - Blake Smith, 20, Knoxville, 3 Feb 2018

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AzPistonsGirl

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thinking of this young man today... hope there are answers soon for his family and communities... and that it does not open a whole different can of worms in the area...
 

eucalyptuz

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I can’t find any new info on this case, but I still think it might be suicide dressed up to look like something else.
I feel that if there were others involved there would be a louder cry for “Justice” etc. but there seems to be a wide-spread acceptance from friends, students and most family. This acceptance may be due to the deep religious beliefs of the community that whatever happened it must have been part of “God’s plan”. Blake’s memorial service has been posted on the FB page but I haven’t watched it (warning: it starts very sadly and slowly with the congregation entering and an open casket :( )

Without any renewed appeals for witnesses and LE not cautioning people about carjackers etc, it doesn’t feel like anything is being ‘solved’...
 

MissUnderstood

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I can’t find any new info on this case, but I still think it might be suicide dressed up to look like something else.
I feel that if there were others involved there would be a louder cry for “Justice” etc. but there seems to be a wide-spread acceptance from friends, students and most family. This acceptance may be due to the deep religious beliefs of the community that whatever happened it must have been part of “God’s plan”. Blake’s memorial service has been posted on the FB page but I haven’t watched it (warning: it starts very sadly and slowly with the congregation entering and an open casket :( )

Without any renewed appeals for witnesses and LE not cautioning people about carjackers etc, it doesn’t feel like anything is being ‘solved’...

I think you are correct about it being suicide. Moo


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rsd1200

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I can’t find any new info on this case, but I still think it might be suicide dressed up to look like something else.
I feel that if there were others involved there would be a louder cry for “Justice” etc. but there seems to be a wide-spread acceptance from friends, students and most family. This acceptance may be due to the deep religious beliefs of the community that whatever happened it must have been part of “God’s plan”. Blake’s memorial service has been posted on the FB page but I haven’t watched it (warning: it starts very sadly and slowly with the congregation entering and an open casket :( )

Without any renewed appeals for witnesses and LE not cautioning people about carjackers etc, it doesn’t feel like anything is being ‘solved’...

Do you think that he may have beaten his car up, and tried to set it up to appear that he drove off into the lake, thinking the block would fly free when it hit the water? It would then look like he drowned in the crash. However, it didn't go as planned? Likely being young, and sheltered, he didn't know that much about vehicles. Things look easy on t.v. I still wonder how deep the water was in that area. It seemed very low in the pics. I'm not ruling anything out just yet. I doubt we'll ever know, though. Freak accident even.
 

eucalyptuz

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Do you think that he may have beaten his car up, and tried to set it up to appear that he drove off into the lake, thinking the block would fly free when it hit the water? It would then look like he drowned in the crash. However, it didn't go as planned? Likely being young, and sheltered, he didn't know that much about vehicles. Things look easy on t.v. I still wonder how deep the water was in that area. It seemed very low in the pics. I'm not ruling anything out just yet. I doubt we'll ever know, though. Freak accident even.
I think to work with a theory of concealed suicide, we need to think about how important it was that that it not look like suicide.
I was thinking about the direction of flow of the river and how the car site is upstream from the park location of the last photo. By car it is a few miles but from car to the park by river it is quite a bit less.
I was wonder if the intent was to somehow make it look like a carjacking by persons unknown and that he was hit and thrown in the river at the park and consequently drowned. This would require him to be found downstream of where the car ended up and downstream of the park. I think he might have tried to at least make it look like the car had been destroyed/sunk by joy-riding criminals but something either went wrong or perhaps in the moment he changed his priorities. I also think it’s possible some alcohol/sedatives might have been consumed. Part of his original plan may have been to paddle/swim downstream maybe using a float to the park area so he would be found nearer to his last photo but away from the car location.

I have probably spent way too long thinking about this case but for some reason it really got stuck in my head...and so all this is purely speculation and may not fit with any of the facts that the police have. There is so little info that has actually been released by LE, (as apposed to family quoted in media and SM rumor), that there is next to nothing to go on.
 

rsd1200

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I think to work with a theory of concealed suicide, we need to think about how important it was that that it not look like suicide.
I was thinking about the direction of flow of the river and how the car site is upstream from the park location of the last photo. By car it is a few miles but from car to the park by river it is quite a bit less.
I was wonder if the intent was to somehow make it look like a carjacking by persons unknown and that he was hit and thrown in the river at the park and consequently drowned. This would require him to be found downstream of where the car ended up and downstream of the park. I think he might have tried to at least make it look like the car had been destroyed/sunk by joy-riding criminals but something either went wrong or perhaps in the moment he changed his priorities. I also think it’s possible some alcohol/sedatives might have been consumed. Part of his original plan may have been to paddle/swim downstream maybe using a float to the park area so he would be found nearer to his last photo but away from the car location.

I have probably spent way too long thinking about this case but for some reason it really got stuck in my head...and so all this is purely speculation and may not fit with any of the facts that the police have. There is so little info that has actually been released by LE, (as apposed to family quoted in media and SM rumor), that there is next to nothing to go on.

That would not be logical thinking, he might be naive, but it would be much easier to make it look as if he fell in while hiking and picture taking. It would be very difficult, imo, for his body to be found where it was, if gone in at AFP. The TN river head is formed on the east side of Knoxville, and flows southwest, toward Chattanooga. If he enjoyed hiking, he'd not be naive about the out of doors.

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eucalyptuz

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That would not be logical thinking, he might be naive, but it would be much easier to make it look as if he fell in while hiking and picture taking. It would be very difficult, imo, for his body to be found where it was, if gone in at AFP. The TN river head is formed on the east side of Knoxville, and flows southwest, toward Chattanooga. If he enjoyed hiking, he'd not be naive about the out of doors.

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I am not local but I'm not sure if the banks of the river near the park are conductive to a "falling in accident"? And even if that's a logical possibility, would that remove the notion of "suicide"?
 

rsd1200

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I am not local but I'm not sure if the banks of the river near the park are conductive to a "falling in accident"? And even if that's a logical possibility, would that remove the notion of "suicide"?

I'm from the Appalachian Region, but not TN. I have been to Knoxville. We have folks who misjudge these mountains, and bodies of water, all the time and end up dying. Especially folks from out of state. If he wanted folks to think he went in at AFP, his body would have been found down river from AFP, not upriver, and in a cove.

The bridge at Georges Creek appears to be about 20' at it's highest point, and there is a spillway under it, that allows Georges Creek (which is actually a stream) to flow out and into that pool, then, underneath the bridge, and on to the other side, and on out into the Tenn. River. At the time of B's death, the water was fairly low, I think, in that area. Lot's of exposed bank. However, even if he slid down a bank and fell in, if intoxicated, combined with the shock of the very cold water, at night, it's very possible he'd drown, even in 5-6' of water, off the shoreline.

One thing that struck me was no scent outside the car, and his body being found in a cove. If you look down, from the previous map, at marker "B Georges Creek", there is a ramp, to drive right to the water's edge. Below is a photo of that ramp. If foul play, what easier place to put a body in the water.

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LadyO

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I am not local but I'm not sure if the banks of the river near the park are conductive to a "falling in accident"? And even if that's a logical possibility, would that remove the notion of "suicide"?

The only place where I think it might be possible to just "walk off" the bank, with a significant fall, is where Pellissippi crosses the bend in the river, as seen on the map above. The side on the river nearest where the car was found has no bank up near where Pellissippi crosses- when you're on the highway, you just see a sheer drop of rock on that side. That said, it would have required quite a hike in the dark to get up to the top from Ballard Way. Possible, but I think not probable.

We are seeing nothing about this locally, new info or otherwise. I think that's telling. I don't want to overstep any bounds here, but it seems the family got their story out asap, and is moving on. I hope they got the answers to what happened, even if the public never does.
 

eucalyptuz

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...snipped for focus...
We are seeing nothing about this locally, new info or otherwise. I think that's telling. I don't want to overstep any bounds here, but it seems the family got their story out asap, and is moving on. I hope they got the answers to what happened, even if the public never does.
I guess that's what I've been feeling all along...that the narrative has been shaped by the family's comments to the press, but LE have said virtually nothing. But then what do we make of the initial preliminary finding of 'accident'...would this be seen as a kindness compared to a suggestion of suicide? And if it is foul play why is nothing happening and where is the outcry?
I'm wondering if the was a note, diary entry or perhaps a comment posted with the instagram photo which shaped LE's focus...
 

rsd1200

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The only place where I think it might be possible to just "walk off" the bank, with a significant fall, is where Pellissippi crosses the bend in the river, as seen on the map above. The side on the river nearest where the car was found has no bank up near where Pellissippi crosses- when you're on the highway, you just see a sheer drop of rock on that side. That said, it would have required quite a hike in the dark to get up to the top from Ballard Way. Possible, but I think not probable.

We are seeing nothing about this locally, new info or otherwise. I think that's telling. I don't want to overstep any bounds here, but it seems the family got their story out asap, and is moving on. I hope they got the answers to what happened, even if the public never does.

By any chance, do you know which side of the bridge he was found on? At AFP it seems it would be hard to just "fall" in. At Ballards, I thought, if intoxicated, he may have stumbled in the dark, and somehow half slid/fell in and was found on that side of the bridge, nearest Ballards Way. Like you, I don't think we'll ever know, but it puzzles me. I hope it was a freak accident, which, would be of some consolation to the family, and, too, there'd not be a killer roaming free.
 

LauraKnight95

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a man's shoe or a woman's shoe, also is it known what kind of necklace? He may have struggled with a woman an pulled her necklace trying to defend himself in a panic, just a thought
 

rsd1200

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a man's shoe or a woman's shoe, also is it known what kind of necklace? He may have struggled with a woman an pulled her necklace trying to defend himself in a panic, just a thought

Or just any other person's necklace. I'd not thought of that. I've looked at several pics, and maybe I've missed it, my eyes aren't what they used to be, but I don't see a necklace on him. I see a lanyard in some.
 

eucalyptuz

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a man's shoe or a woman's shoe, also is it known what kind of necklace? He may have struggled with a woman an pulled her necklace trying to defend himself in a panic, just a thought
The family reported it was Blake's shoe and necklace - this has not been verified by police in anything I have read.
ETA: LE also did not comment whether the body was found with shoe/s so it could be that there was a second pair of shoes from the car at the scene.
 

LadyO

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I guess that's what I've been feeling all along...that the narrative has been shaped by the family's comments to the press, but LE have said virtually nothing. But then what do we make of the initial preliminary finding of 'accident'...would this be seen as a kindness compared to a suggestion of suicide? And if it is foul play why is nothing happening and where is the outcry?
I'm wondering if the was a note, diary entry or perhaps a comment posted with the instagram photo which shaped LE's focus...

Maybe it was an accident as authorities said to begin with. Perhaps he was intoxicated in some way, and there was evidence of that in the car. I could imagine that might be very embarassing for the family, and that they might have a hard time accepting that if that was the case. It's definitely a mystery.
 

LadyO

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By any chance, do you know which side of the bridge he was found on? At AFP it seems it would be hard to just "fall" in. At Ballards, I thought, if intoxicated, he may have stumbled in the dark, and somehow half slid/fell in and was found on that side of the bridge, nearest Ballards Way. Like you, I don't think we'll ever know, but it puzzles me. I hope it was a freak accident, which, would be of some consolation to the family, and, too, there'd not be a killer roaming free.

No, unfortunately i dont. I don't believe anything has been said about the exact location where he was found.
 

rsd1200

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Maybe it was an accident as authorities said to begin with. Perhaps he was intoxicated in some way, and there was evidence of that in the car. I could imagine that might be very embarassing for the family, and that they might have a hard time accepting that if that was the case. It's definitely a mystery.

I'm leaning a bit toward an intoxicated, freak, accident, with some clear markers that LE has found, and shared with the family that has led the family to accept that it was accidental. If that makes sense. His friend saying he had struggles may have been indicating a couple, three, things that could have led him to that place. None safe.
 
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