Police identify victim of possible Independence homicide

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. – Neighbors of a possible homicide victim were left with an uneasy feeling after they found out what had happened across the street from them.

Police found 65-year-old Charles Stephens, dead in his independence home on Saturday. Neighbors say his wife Carrie was gone all day, and when she got home, found her husband dead in their bed, bleeding from his mouth. Neighbors say she ran to her next door neighbor’s house and yelled for them to let her in. They called 911 and police were on the scene soon after.

Nita Wait said she always looked forward to seeing her neighbor Charles Stephens across the street.

“Just a friendly outgoing guy, he always waved,” said Wait about her neighbor.

But now she feels something a little different as she watched police cars and crime scene tape blocking off his home.

“My heart goes out to her. That's a tough thing,” said Wait about Stephens’ wife.

While some neighbors say Stevens was great to be around, other neighbors say they'd often hear screaming coming from the home, and that the couple was rumored to have had serious marriage problems.

“He was a nice man, just a sweetheart,” said Wait.

“He'd lend you tools. He'd do anything for you,” said neighbor Mary Rezaiekahaligh.

Whatever the case, people in Stephens’ neighborhood just want to know what happened to their neighbor.

“I do want to find out how it happened. I want to make sure whoever did it is put away,” said Rezaiekahaligh.

Although police aren't releasing specifics they are ruling this death a homicide.

Police are also asking for the public’s help on this investigation. If you have any information please call the TIPS Hotline at (816)474-TIPS.

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