Manhunt Continues For St. Clair Murder Suspect

Posted on: 7:00 am, April 26, 2012, by , updated on: 09:05am, April 27, 2012

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ST. CLAIR, MO (KTVI)– UPDATE: The Franklin County sheriff says Michael Murphy is a wanted fugitive. Investigators have been searching Lake St. Clair in Franklin County for any sign of Murphy, but found none.

ST. CLAIR, MO (KTVI)– It is day three of an extensive manhunt for a suspect who investigators say shot and killed his girlfriend at a Franklin County, Missouri, home.

The murder happened Wednesday and the manhunt has been on ever since.

The house where the shooting happened is on Oakwood Drive in the Lake St. Clair subdivision near the town of St. Clair.

Police still have the area taped off as they try to piece together the facts of what happened.

Police are looking for Michael Murphey, 57. Investigators suspect Murphey shot and killed his “on again, off again” girlfriend at the home Wednesday afternoon around 5:00pm, then took off.

Police guarded the home all night long.

Thursday morning they were carrying out bags of what might be potential evidence.

Investigators say neighbors saw Murphey leave the area after the shooting in a truck with a rifle that police suspect he used to shoot the woman.

Authorities found the truck abandoned on a remote road not far from the scene, in this same subdivision.

Several agencies searched for Murphey well into the night.

Franklin County Sheriff Gary Toelke says canines will be brought out Thursday to search the area where the truck was abandoned.

Toelke says it could be that Murphey threw the rifle into the lake then left.  Or it might be that he’s just hiding somewhere in the dense brush in the subdivision.

There’s even the possibility that Murphey may have killed himself.

Teams will likely be searching on foot in the subdivision Thursday, looking for Murphey. Dive teams may also be brought in to search a lake near where they found the abandoned car.

The identity of the victim has not been released yet. We are told she was 40 years old.

Sheriff Toelke tells us his deputies are familiar with Murphey because they had responded to domestic issue calls several times between Murphey and the victim, but Toelke  says to the best of his knowledge, charges were never filed.

Sheriff Toelke is asking for assistance in finding Murphey.  He is described as a white male, in his 50s, 5-foot 8 inches, 220 pounds, wearing a white t-shirt, blues jeans or shorts. He is believed to be armed with a rifle.

If you see him, do not approach him. Call 9-1-1.