The D.C. Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has ruled the death of 21-year-old Rayshawn Hailstock a homicide.
Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier said in an email Wednesday that detectives are still “investigating the circumstances of the case and will present the facts to the [United States Attorney’s Office].”
Hailstock was found unconscious in the 2300 block of Alabama Avenue Southeast around 8:30 p.m. June 30; he later died at the hospital. A statement issued by police the next day said they believe Hailstock had been in a fight.
Dr. Lois Goslinosky conducted Hailstock’s autopsy the day after his death and determined that the cause of death was blunt impact injuries of the head and neck. The manner of death was ruled a homicide.
If Hailstock’s death is determined to be a crime, police will classify it as a murder and it could be prosecuted by the US Attorney’s Office. There are occasionally instances when a case is ruled a homicide but not a murder, such as in cases of self-defense or police-involved shootings.