OWEN COUNTY, Ind. — Indiana State Police are investigating a rare homicide in Owen County after a homeowner was shot to death.
Indiana State Police said people at a home in the area of U.S. 231 and North Cataract Road called 911 just before 8:15 p.m. Wednesday to report an active home invasion.
“There was an exchange of gunfire between the homeowners and a suspect and maybe a second suspect. That’s really all we have at this time,” said ISP first Sgt. Michael Wood. “I don’t want to speculate if it was a home invasion or a targeted event. It really could be anything.”
When sheriff’s deputies arrived they found the homeowner, Gilardo Garcia Salinas shot in the yard outside the home. Despite efforts to provide first aid, the 39-year-old died on the scene.
While witnesses claimed the shooting stemmed from a home invasion, State Police say the cause remains under investigation.
“Our investigators have disclosed they don’t think the public is in danger, but it’s too early to say if this was a true home invasion, a targeted act or a random event,” said Wood.
First Sgt. Wood says it’s believed that two suspects drove away in a gray or blue car. The make and model remain unknown.
It’s also not clear if the suspects were injured by the gunfire.
While neighbors didn’t want to go on camera, they did say the homeowners moved into the home just a couple of months ago.
Those neighbors were not surprised the crime took place at that address, even though homicides in Owen County are highly unusual.
“It’s a rural tight knit community and anything like this is a tragic event. Neighbors just need to look out for other neighbors and reach out to us if they see anything,” said Wood.
Anyone with information is urged to call the ISP Bloomington post at 812-332-4411. Ask for Detective Ian Matthews.