Police Release Few New Details In Cedar Rapids Homicide Investigation

By Lee Hermiston, Reporter

Police investigate at the scene of a suspected homicide in southwest Cedar Rapids Tuesday, June 11, 2013. (image taken from KCRG-TV9 video)

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By Richard Pratt

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- Cedar Rapids police continue investigating an unattended death at an apartment on the southwest side as a homicide.

Officers responded to 5663 Kirkwood Blvd. just after 3:30 p.m. Monday and remained on the scene Wednesday morning. Sgt. Cristy Hamblin said police were called to the apartment for a medical call. The subject of that call was deceased, and police are now conducting a death investigation to determine the cause.

Though police were originally investigating it as an unattended death, a release from the department Tuesday afternoon said the incident is now being investigated as a homicide. Hamblin said Wednesday that officials are not releasing the name of the deceased and that she has not been notified of whether investigators have determined a suspect. She said she did not have any information on why the incident is being investigated as a homicide.

Hamblin said death investigations are common practice when police do not know the manner of death. The investigations are similar to a homicide investigation – even when foul play is not suspected – so police don’t lose any potential evidence before relinquishing the scene.

It’s typically not common for death investigations to last this long, but Hamblin said the deceased lived alone, so there was less of a rush to process the scene.

“When they’re totally alone like this, then we’ll secure the scene and get a search warrant,” she said. “There doesn’t appear to be anyone else that was living in the apartment, so we had time on our side.”

Hamblin said an autopsy will be conducted on the deceased to help investigators determine the cause of death.

Reporter Hayley Bruce contributed to this story.
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