The trailer home of Roy Napier where he and
three family members were found dead
Sunday. A neighbor, Henry Smith, was found
dead in his home across the street.
AJ Mast/Associated Press
(Brookville, Ind.) – Five people found dead in two western Franklin County homes on Sunday were killed by somebody who is likely still alive.
The victims' bodies were found in two homes on Stipps Hill Road in the Laurel area Sunday afternoon after two motorists drove upon a four-year-old girl wandering in the road. She had apparently escaped the crime scene and led police to the bodies.
“At this moment we have officially started a murder investigation,” said Indiana State Police Sgt. Jerry Goodin during a Tuesday evening press conference outside the Franklin County Courthouse in Brookville. “The person or persons responsible for this crime was not among the deceased.”
Franklin County Coroner Wanda Lee said that preliminary autopsy results show each of the five victims died of gunshots to the head or chest,
Those victims were identified as Roy D. Napier, 50; his estranged wife Angela A. Napier, 47; their two grown children Melissa L. Napier, 23, and Jacob L. Napier, 18; and neighbor Henry S. Smith, 43. All were Laurel residents.
Angela Napier and Henry Smith had each suffered blunt force trauma to the head in addition to gunshots.
The child found in the road is reported to be the daughter of Melissa Napier. Gooding said the child is now safe, but would not elaborate any further on her involvement.
Lee said official causes of death for the victims will not be complete for another six weeks pending toxicology test results.
Investigators with the Indiana State Police have no persons of interest or suspects as of Tuesday. Goodin said despite that, the state police are encouraged with how the investigation is progressing.
Detectives are still following leads and tips. Members of the public with any information possibly related to the murders are encouraged to call 911.
“We will exhaust all resources we have to solve this case,” Goodin said.
Relatives of the Napiers have speculated that the killings may have been connected to drug activity. Neighbors have speculated that the Napier home was the site of many drug deals.
Investigators, however, would not publicly guess at a motive.
“We are looking at all motives for this crime. We do not have a motive yet. The only person who knows that is the person who committed this crime,” said Goodin.
Franklin County Sheriff Kenneth Murphy tried to quell fears among those in the community knowing that the killer, or killers, are still out there.
“I want to ensure the citizens of the county we have a lot of boots on the ground working this case right now,” Franklin County Sheriff Kenneth Murphy said. “The public needs to continue to be vigilant in keeping themselves safe.”