Thursday, October 25, 2012

Madison County sheriff's office confirms six cross-state killings could be connected

LINCOLN COUNTY, Tennessee Oct 25 2012-- Law enforcement agencies in Alabama and Tennessee are investigating a bizarre string of cross-state killings that may all be connected. Since Monday morning, six adults and an unborn child have been found killed from Huntsville to Hazel Green in Alabama and Park City and Fayetteville in Tennessee.

Madison County sheriff's investigators said they are working with the Lincoln County sheriff's office and Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences to piece together the surprising incidents.

"We are all trying to put our information together at this time," Sgt. Brian Chaffin said. "We do feel they are connected due to the nature of relationships."

Lincoln County sheriff's investigators first responded to a house at 3240 Huntsville Highway in Park City, Tenn. at approximately 10:25 a.m. Monday. Sheriff Murray Blackwelder said the call was for a welfare check on a child who was reportedly crying at the home just over the Alabama-Tennessee state line. Investigators found a 3-year-old in the garage. Blackwelder said the child, who was unharmed, was removed from the house.

Chabreya Campbell, 22, and her 18-month-old son, Rico Ragland, along with 21-year-old Amber McCaulley of Huntsville, were found dead inside the home, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation confirmed. Campbell was six-months pregnant, according to police.

A fourth victim, Jessica Brown, 21, was found dead at a second crime scene located at 4 Fox Wood Drive in Fayetteville later the same evening, a TBI news release said. A 2-month-old baby was left unharmed.

Blackwelder named Warren Vincent Crutcher, 24, as a 'person of interest' in the cases, which were believed to be connected and related to domestic violence, he said. Brown's neighbors reported that she and Crutcher were a couple and likely still dating until her death.

Crutcher, who police say was also the father of 3-year-old Vincent Crutcher found in the Huntsville Highway home, was himself found dead in a Hazel Green field Tuesday morning.

He is also believed to the father of the 2-month-old found in the Fayetteville home, NBC news reports.

"I use to see him (Crutcher) over there all the time," neighbor Amanda Sullivan said. "He even cut our neighbors' grass sometimes."

Residents on either side of Campbell's house in Park City said they knew little of its occupants, except that they had a small child and several dogs.

Steve Clem of Ardmore, Ala., backed his pickup truck down the long driveway from Huntsville Highway to unload a dog house Tuesday afternoon. Clem said it was one of 7 or 8 he had made for Crutcher. "It's a box to put puppies in," Clem said.

Crutcher bred pit bull dogs, Clem said, describing his customer as "a pretty good fella." Clem said he had heard of the shooting, "but never would have suspected it would be Warren."

Madison County sheriff's officials said Huntsville Utilities workers found the body of a black male near a bush in the 3000 block of B.H. Reeves Road at approximately 8 a.m. Tuesday.

Investigators confirmed the body was positively identified as Crutcher. The cause of death remains unknown.

"We have persons of interest and are actively pursuing leads," Chaffin said.

The six killings, along with a shooting death in the 5000 block of Ortega Circle in Huntsville Tuesday morning, are under investigation and possibly connected, according to investigators.

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