01/23/05 — LaGrange police look for possible witnesses, clues in fatal shooting

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LaGrange police look for possible witnesses, clues in fatal shooting

By Jack Stephens
Published in News on January 23, 2005 2:05 AM

LAGRANGE -- "We're still following several leads," LaGrange Police Chief John Sullivan said late Friday about the investigation of last week's fatal shooting of a self-employed businessman.

Sullivan said no arrests have been made.

The body of the victim, 49-year-old Kenneth Rouse, was found Wednesday night in the backyard of his home at 201 Ed Herring Road.

Sullivan said his department that includes nine full-time and four part-time officers had canvassed the neighborhood searching for witnesses and clues. He said more interviews were planned.

After police and sheriff's officers searched the home and yard for evidence, they removed the yellow evidence tape that had encircled the home. Sullivan said the home has been released to the family. In the meantime, the chief said the family granted officers access to it as they needed.

But Sullivan said, "We don't want to give out any more details about the case or the motives until after an arrest is made."

The Lenoir County Sheriff's Office assisted LaGrange police in the crime scene investigation.

The body was taken to Greenville, where an autopsy was performed Friday to determine the cause of death. Sullivan said he had not received a preliminary report.

Rouse, a Coast Guard veteran, lived alone in the modest brick house, about two blocks from the Police Department, in the northwest quadrant of the town. Sullivan said Rouse had operated a salvage business and sold wood pallets.

Sullivan said Rouse's survivors included several brothers who lived in the LaGrange area.

Funeral arrangements are pending at LaGrange Mor-tuary.