Police identify body found in Palestine home, vehicle recovered
According to the Palestine Police Department, a body found Monday at a home in the 100 block of Longhorn Drive has been identified as 81-year-old John Jerome Ferles of Palestine. Based on evidence found at the residence, Ferles' death is being investigated as a homicide.
"It's kind of hard to believe that it would happen in your neighborhood," said Joyce Crawford, a neighbor.
Ferles' 2004 Chevrolet Impala was missing from his residence when police arrived and has now been recovered. Police say the vehicle was found an hour away from the home. The vehicle is currently being stored at an unknown wrecker facility. Investigators are traveling to view the car in an effort to identify any evidence in the case.
Officers were dispatched to Ferles' residence to investigate a welfare concern. Upon arrival, police found the home's back door open. Officers entered the residence and located Ferles' body. After speaking with neighbors, investigators learned that the victim had not been seen by neighbors in several days.
Neighbors say Ferls' absence was not uncommon.
"I can't imagine anybody being mad enough to hurt him in any way. It's pretty much a shock for us," said Gene Crawford.
Gene and Joyce Crawford have lived in the neighborhood for 18 years. They say their neighborhood has been nothing but quite over the years, until last night.
"I saw a police car out here last night with a spot light. They were going up and down the street, especially in that area," said Joyce.
The fact that the case involves an elderly man has neighbors even more upset.
"It's hard to imagine someone hurting someone, especially an elderly person. Anybody at any age is a bad thing, but when they zero in on people that live alone and can't defend themselves, that's really sad. They are sick," said Joyce.
The death of a neighbor has since left some residents uneasy.
"It's going to make people feel more uneasy in the neighborhood," said Joyce. "People are going to be wondering, 'Who's next?'"
Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to contact the Palestine Police Department at 903-729-2254 or Crimestoppers at 903-729-TIPS (8477).
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