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Man’s burning death inside car in Skokie ruled accidental

A body was found in a car fire Oct. 8, 2016, in north suburban Skokie. | Network Video Productions

The death of a 50-year-old man found inside a burning car last fall in north suburban Skokie has been ruled accidental.

Thomas Damnitz was dead at the wheel of a car that was found engulfed in flames about 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 8, 2016, in the 9100 block of Lawler Avenue, according to Skokie police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

An autopsy at the time did not rule on the Skokie resident’s cause or manner of death.

Authorities have since determined he died of burns after the car’s engine caught fire, police said Monday. It was ruled an accident.