This is a partial transcript from "On the Record," March 31, 2006, that has been edited for clarity.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, HOST: Minister Matthew Winkler was gunned down in the back in his parsonage. His wife, Mary, sits in jail, accused of pulling the trigger. Tonight, we have new information about exactly how he died. Joining us from Nashville is the Tennessee state medical examiner from the Center of Forensic Medicine, Dr. Bruce Levy. Welcome, sir.
DR. BRUCE LEVY, TENNESSEE STATE MEDICAL EXAMINER: Hi. Good evening, Greta.
VAN SUSTEREN: I know, sir, you've looked at the autopsy report. Can you tell me, was it one single shot?
LEVY: It was. It was a single shot from a shotgun that killed Mr. Winkler. And a shotgun is different than a bullet. Instead of having a single slug, what you have is a shell full of literally hundreds of very small metallic pellets.
VAN SUSTEREN: Could you tell from looking at the autopsy report, or could the medical examiner who conducted the autopsy determine the distance between the gun and the minister?
LEVY: You can, in a general sense, just by observation. Because those pellets spread over a distance, the tighter the pattern, the closer the wound is. It looks like it's somewhere between a couple and a few feet away, maybe as little as two or as much as five. But in order to know for sure, you actually have to have to test-fire the weapon and duplicate the pattern with what we saw on the body.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Shot in the back. Was he found lying on his stomach, on his side, on his back? How was he found?
LEVY: My understanding — and this is just information that I heard — was that he was found on his back.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. And how do you explain that?
LEVY: Well, a person can be shot in the back and they can fall in any number of positions. Just because you're shot in a particular part of your body doesn't necessarily mean that you are going to necessarily fall in any one way or another.
VAN SUSTEREN: And I suppose it also doesn't determine when you die. But I mean, looking at the wounds, was this something that killed him almost instantly?
LEVY: Well, actually, there are very few wounds that would actually kill you instantly. You basically need injuries to the brain to cause instantaneous death. Wounds to any other part of the body would actually cause bleeding, and it would be the bleeding that would lead to death. So we're looking at a process that could take a couple to several minutes to happen.
VAN SUSTEREN: Now, his body was found on a Wednesday night. Do you know or was there an estimate as to when he died?
LEVY: We really don't have any estimate as to when he died. That's something that would be based on the investigation down at the scene in Selmer.
VAN SUSTEREN: I take it, though, that maybe contents in the stomach — there are certain things to sort of at least give doctors sort of a tip or a clue or an ability to estimate.
LEVY: Sometimes you can get clues from what is or isn't in the stomach, but you know, it's really hard to tell. It is a very inexact science. There's a little bit more art to it, at this point, than there is science. So there can be some soft clues that might lead you to one place or another, but it's not like a TV show, where you can pin it down to within a few minutes. You're typically looking at, at best, a process over several hours that you could pinpoint a death.
VAN SUSTEREN: So are you able, in this instance, or not even, to give us sort of an estimate, a rough estimate as to when he died, whether he died the Tuesday night, for instance, or a short time before he was found Wednesday?
LEVY: Yes. We are just not prepared at this time to really have any opinion on to when he might have actually died.
VAN SUSTEREN: But the actual cause of death would be bleeding to death? Is that the final analysis?
LEVY: Yes. It would be bleeding as a result of the shotgun wound.
VAN SUSTEREN: Dr. Levy, thank you.
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