Sunday, July 13, 2003

Lakeside Park cops suspect homicide



By Stephenie Steitzer
The Cincinnati Enquirer

LAKESIDE PARK - The body of an 83-year-old widower was discovered at his Carran Drive home about 4 p.m. Saturday.

Lakeside Park/Crestview Hills police declined to comment, but William Crockett, Commonwealth Attorney for Kenton County, confirmed late Saturday that police are investigating the case as a homicide.

The victim, identified by neighbors as Earl Rusche, had lived in the house at least 40 years and was a retired printer. Neighbors described him as friendly and outgoing.

"He was a nice guy. If he saw me out in the driveway, he'd come over and yak,'' said Shawn Martin, 25, a next-door neighbor. Martin said a middle-aged woman and her son, in his early 20s, lived with Rusche.

"People who have been associated with (Rusche) in the recent past are being talked to (by investigators),'' Crockett said.

Another neighbor, Ruth Dacey, who has lived in her house since 1957, said police made frequent visits to Rusche's house in the past two years. She did not know the nature of those visits.

Dacey said Rusche's wife, Mary Jane, died about 20 years ago.

Neighbors said Rusche was the father of two daughters who did not live with him.

Police cordoned off the property in the middle-class neighborhood off of Dixie Highway and were investigating early this morning.

Kenton County Coroner officials carried out the body shortly before 11 p.m.

Police declined to say if they have any suspects.

If the case is confirmed as a homicide, it would be the second in just over two months in Lakeside Park, a Kenton County community of 2,900 residents.

In the earlier case, Dennis R. Greene Sr. was charged with murder in the death of his wife, Tara Greene, who was a math teacher at Holmes Junior High School.

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E-mail ssteitzer@enquirer.com




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