Tuesday, October 26, 1999

Police may have lead in slaying

Have sketch of man they want to question

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        UNION TWP. — A year-anniversary canvass of a homicide victim's neighborhood has yielded a possible new lead in the death of Michael Carpenter, Clermont County's Union Township police said Monday.

        Mr. Carpenter, 42, was found beaten and strangled in his home off Ohio Pike last October, and his car was stolen.

        The car was recovered later that month in Oakley, but no one appeared to have seen anything unusual in the moments following the slaying.

        That might have changed recently.

        Police have released a composite of a man they want to question. A neighbor of Mr. Carpenter's saw the man near the scene shortly afterthe slaying.

        Police won't say whether the man was seen in Mr. Carpenter's car, nor whether they have any information regarding the man's possible height and weight.

        They also did not reveal whether the new information came from a person previously interviewed.

        “It's not uncommon in a homicide case to take this long,” Union Township Lt. Terry Zinser said Monday.

        Mr. Carpenter's car was recovered weeks after the slaying at Brazee Street and Enyart Avenue.

        Lt. Zinser said police are awaiting lab tests on DNA evidence in the case, but declined to say whether that evidence was collected from the vehicle or elsewhere.

        The evidence was submitted for testing “in recent months,” Lt. Zinser said.

        Items were stolen from the home and police haven't ruled out robbery as a motive.

        He said police are considering scenarios other than the one made public in the days following the slaying — that Mr. Carpenter, who was married, was seen earlier on the night of the slaying at a downtown Cincinnati bar frequently by gay men.

        Police said Mr. Carpenter's apparent bisexuality was known to his wife, Marie, who has since moved back to Wisconsin.

        Authorities have said they do not consider her a suspect. It was Mrs. Carpenter who discovered her husband's body tied up in the couple's bedroom.


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