Police stalled in solving murder of deaf Indianapolis man

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Sept. 16, 2014)-- Metro homicide detectives are having a hard time talking to witnesses and friends of a murdered east side man nearly one month after his body was found.

Timothy Lenges was deaf and so are most of his friends.

"The challenge is with him being hearing impaired, most of his friends are hearing impaired," said Detective Roger Feuquay, "and the deaf community is very close-knit, however, we don't have very many interpreters on the police department that we can use."

"We have to use deaf community services from Easter Seals as our translators, we have to schedule them, we have to schedule people to come in, and then the interviewing style we would normally use on a homicide is completely taken out when we use a translator."

Feuquay thinks Lenges' friends know what the east side man was into and why he had been pawning his possessions for cash lately.

"There was no forced entry so he was either let in or there was an unlocked door," said Feuquay. "We believe it's somebody he knows or stuff he may have done in the past."

Lenges grew up without hearing said his big brother.

"He was the one I had to take care of and look out for," said Pete Lenges. "He had a disadvantage right off from the go from being deaf."

He continued, "He always had a love of cars and mechanics and ever since he knew how to work a wrench he was taking things apart. He had a gift in that way. He could just go up to a car and put his hand on the hood and know there was something wrong just by the way it would vibrate.

"He was always just my little baby brother."

Lenges was a father of three, grandfather to two, and it was a teenage daughter who found him dead of a gunshot wound to the chest in the house where he lived as a child.

"It was a home my grandparents built," said his brother. "My parents lived in it for a while, we lived in it growing up."

"I could see the writing on the wall. It was just a bad area. He had been broken into multiple times. He'd been shot twice before during robberies. Never caught who did it. I would keep encouraging him to get out but he would say, 'I'm fine. I'm OK here.'"

Lenges said his brother's friends may not even know of the killing, or may have clues and information detectives are seeking.

"He was a kind and harmless person," said Lenges. "He was always the first person to offer help to somebody because he was always understood what it was to need help, but he was also strong and independent that he wouldn't always ask for help even when he needed it."

Anyone with information on the murder of Timothy Lenges in the 6100 block of East 32nd St. on August 16 is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 262-TIPS.