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Westlake Village Nurse Was Shot to Death, Coroner Says

TIMES STAFF WRITER

A Westlake Village nurse whose decomposed body was found in a heavily wooded gully in the Santa Monica Mountains died of multiple gunshot wounds, the Los Angeles County coroner’s office reported Monday.

A dental consultant confirmed that the body found Sunday beneath an oak tree in the 33500 block of Mulholland Highway near the Ventura County line was that of 34-year-old Kellie O’Sullivan, who had been missing since Sept. 14, said Scott Carrier, a coroner’s spokesman.

Carrier refused to say more about the slaying, other than that the autopsy Monday found no evidence of sexual injury.

Meanwhile, 19-year-old Mark Scott Thornton, described by Ventura County detectives as the prime suspect in O’Sullivan’s disappearance, is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon in Ventura County Municipal Court.

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Deputy Dist. Atty. Peter D. Kossoris, Ventura County’s senior homicide prosecutor, declined to say what charges he expects to file against Thornton.

Thornton, also known as Mark Scott Sarrazin, was booked into Ventura County Jail on Sunday on suspicion of kidnaping and assault with a deadly weapon for allegedly abducting his 16-year-old ex-girlfriend, Stephanie Campbell, and firing a shot at Campbell’s mother.

The abduction came about nine hours after O’Sullivan was last seen leaving a friend’s office in Westlake Village.

Police in Reno arrested Thornton just before midnight Sept. 19 at the Circus Circus Hotel and Casino after Stephanie stole away from him and summoned help.

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Reno police found O’Sullivan’s black 1991 Ford Explorer parked a few blocks from the casino. Court records show that Ventura County detectives who searched the truck found an insurance card in O’Sullivan’s name, along with a black purse containing 41 .38-caliber bullets--the same size ammunition found in the snub-nosed revolver Thornton pulled in the casino when he was arrested.

Detectives said Thornton admitted taking the truck; he said he found it empty with the keys inside. But he denied that he ever saw O’Sullivan.

Soon after O’Sullivan disappeared, her friends and family mounted a massive search that dovetailed with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department’s efforts.


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