Four months after Johnson City murder, still no suspect


JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. - In Johnson City, there are still no answers in a murder case that's gone unsolved almost four months now. Otis Church, 72, was killed last Halloween and police still don't have a suspect.

Church was found dead in his home on St. Louis Street. Neighbors said they are mystified, unable to believe anyone would kill him.

"He never did nothing against anyone as i know of," said neighbor and friend Shirley Britt.

She said he was always working around his house and true friend to those close to him.

"I can't believe someone would kill him," Britt said. "He'd give you the shirt off his back."

Church was also very private, keeping mostly to himself.

"Why anyone... He didn't have anything, you know?" she said, "for anyone to take from him."

Lieutenant Kevin Peters said they still have no suspect nor motive.

"We do have an inclination of something that could be missing from the residence but we're not sure what," Lt. Peters said.

Investigators are still awaiting autopsy results, and test results from evidence like blood and fingerprints found at the scene are still coming in. He won't release more details.

"There's some things at the scene that only us and the person who's responsible for the killing Mr. Church would know, so we're not releasing any of that information," Lt. Peters said. "That will help us know if the person is a viable suspect."

Until they run out of leads, the case stays open.

"We think at some point in time we will be able to determine what the motive is and come to a conclusion in the case," he said.

Neighbors hope the killer will be brought to justice.

"I have to say this," Britt said, "it would take a crazy person to treat him like that."

If anyone has any information about the case, they're asked to call the Johnson City Police.

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