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Investigation into multiple murders ongoing

Posted on Tuesday, November 20, 2012 at 12:59 am

Authorities are continuing to investigate the homicides of six people, four of which occurred here in Lincoln County, almost a month ago now.

“We are still rounding up pieces of evidence to confirm what we believe to be true in regard to the case,” said Lincoln County Sheriff Murray Blackwelder Monday. “Because of the magnitude of the case, all the agencies involved are being as thorough as possible as we maneuver through this investigation.”

Law enforcement in northern Alabama were on the Flint River late last week searching for evidence in the series of murders, the first of which was discovered Oct. 22 here in southern Lincoln County.

At the time, authorities said the common link in the case appeared to be Warren Vincent Crutcher, Jr., who was initially identified as a person of interest in the case. Crutcher’s body was found on Oct. 23, the morning following the discovery of two victims at a southern Lincoln County residence, as well as a third victim at another residence not far away.

The findings of autopsies conducted by state medical examiners have not been released by authorities.

Four crime scenes are at the heart of the investigation. The first of those was discovered mid-morning on Oct. 22 when authorities got a call to do a welfare check at a Huntsville Highway residence less than a mile north of the Tennessee/Alabama state line. A 3-year-old in the home had dialed a family member, saying his mother wouldn’t wake up.

When authorities arrived, they found Chabreya Campbell, 22, and her 18-month-old son Rico Ragland dead in the home. Chabreya was also believed to be about six months pregnant. Chabreya and Rico lived at the home along with her 3-year-old son Vincent Crutcher, who was found there unharmed. The second adult found dead in the home was 21-year-old Amber McCaulley, of Huntsville, Ala.

The second crime scene was found late that same afternoon when authorities were called to the home of Jessica Brown, 21, at 4 Fox Wood Drive just off Monks Road in southern Lincoln County, not far from the first crime scene. Her 2-month-old son was found in the home unharmed.

Both that 2-month-old and the 3-year-old found at the initial crime scene were children of Vincent Crutcher, authorities have said.

The third crime scene was discovered the following afternoon, Oct. 23, when Huntsville police responded to a shooting call and found Jeffrey Pope dead at 5102 Ortega Circle residence. Then the fourth crime scene is where Crutcher’s body was found just off B.H. Reeves Road in Hazel Green the morning of Oct. 23.

Involved in the multi-jurisdictional investigation are the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department, the district attorney’s office for the 17th Judicial District, Fayetteville Police Department, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Madison County Sheriff’s Department, U.S. Marshalls’ Office, Huntsville Police Department, Madison County STACK Team, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Posse, Madison County district attorney’s office, and multiple first responders.

Persons having information that might assist in the investigation are asked to contact either the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department at (931) 433-9821 or Lincoln County Area Crime Stoppers at (931) 433-7867. Persons calling Crime Stoppers can remain anonymous.