Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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February 19, 2010

PPD investigates death as homicide

PRINCETON — Detectives with the Princeton Police Department are continuing their investigation into the death of a local man who was found dead at his home in early February.

The case began when an officer responded to what appeared to be an unattended death, said Sgt. J.W. Howell of the Princeton police. Members of the person’s family had been unable to contact him.

“It was a 217 1/2 High Street at the victim’s residence,” Howell said. “He was Melvin Parks, age 65. The victim was found deceased in his living room.”

The body was sent to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Charleston for an autopsy Feb. 8. A report examiners sent the next day indicated a homicide, Howell said.

“We were notified from the State Medical Examiner’s Office that during the autopsy that there were signs of foul play,” Howell said. He would not described the indicators that pointed to homicide.

“Right now, I can’t say,” Howell said. “We’re still investigating the case. We’ve talked to several people of interest at this point.”

Nothing was missing from Parks’ home, Howell added.

“It doesn’t appear that robbery was the motive or anything like that. Right now we don’t have a motive. Our investigation is ongoing, and we’re asking for the public’s help. They can contact me at the department,” he said.

The Princeton Police Department can be reached at 304-425-5001.

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