Vidalia police investigating death as a homicide

Published 11:32 pm Monday, October 5, 2009

VIDALIA — A Vidalia man is dead, and police are investigating the death as a homicide.

Michael W. Welch, 52, was discovered dead in his residence at 804 Myrtle St., shortly after 6 p.m. His brother, Darrell Welch, made the discovery.

Police Chief Ronnie G. “Tapper” Hendricks said the police would not release the cause of death until the autopsy is completed today.

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The autopsy will be performed at the Jefferson Parish Coroner’s Office.

Investigators believe Welch may have been dead for several days when he was discovered, but when he was killed is still an open question.

“We’ve talked to the neighbors, and some say the last time they saw his truck there, it was Thursday, but somebody else said they saw someone in the house Saturday,” Hendricks said.

The victim’s 2006 Chevrolet Silverado is missing, and police are actively on the lookout for it, Hendricks said.

Investigators have a person of interest in the case.

A warrant for the suspect’s arrest on charges of second-degree murder will be filed, but police do not want to release the suspect’s name until the warrant is filed, Hendricks said.

The Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office is assisting in the case.

Anyone with information about the case should contact Investigator Randy Stockman at the Vidalia Police Department at 318-336-5254 or Investigator David Hedrick at 318-336-5231.