Bar-Jonah Died From Blood Clot

By Beacon Staff

DEER LODGE – Nathaniel Bar-Jonah, a convicted sex offender who was once accused of kidnapping and killing a 10-year-old boy, died in prison of complications related to his medical conditions and poor health, according to autopsy results released Tuesday.

“The autopsy findings indicate that the cause of death was a blood clot and that no foul play was involved in the death,” Montana State Prison Warden Mike Mahoney said.

The state medical examiner, Dr. Gary Dale, performed the autopsy Monday and results were forwarded Tuesday to prison officials.

Bar-Jonah, 51, was overweight and had recently had a leg amputated due to complications from diabetes, prison officials said.

He was found unresponsive in his cell at 6 a.m. Sunday and pronounced dead at a nearby hospital about an hour later.

Bar-Jonah was serving a 130-year sentence for kidnapping, sexually assaulting and choking a teenage neighbor boy.

In 2000, authorities also charged Bar-Jonah with murder in the 1996 disappearance of 10-year-old Zach Ramsay in Great Falls. Authorities said they had evidence suggesting Bar-Jonah had butchered the boy and disposed of his body in meals served to neighbors. They were later forced to dismiss the murder charge after Ramsay’s mother said she would testify she believed her son was still alive.

Bar-Jonah moved to Montana after facing legal trouble in Massachusetts.

In 1977, Bar-Jonah pleaded guilty in Worcester Superior Court to charges of kidnapping, attempted murder and impersonation of a police officer after he posed as a police officer and kidnapped two boys in Shrewsbury. Bar-Jonah attempted to assault the boys, and when they resisted, he tried to strangle them. One of the boys escaped and found help.

Later, a plea deal in another case allowed Bar-Jonah to move to Montana with his family.