Moberly homicide investigation

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MOBERLY - One person is in custody and has been charged in the death of 39-year-old Kevin McCuiston of Boonville, Moberly Police Department confirmed Friday. 

Moberly resident, 28-year-old Joseph Lee Kertz, has been charged with first degree murder, first degree robbery, second degree arson, unlawful possession of a weapon, armed criminal action, tampering with evidence in a felony prosecution, and third degree promoting prostitution.

At 7:02 a.m. on Thursday, Moberly Police Department and the Randolph County Sheriff's Department responded to a shots fired call at 1505 Calhoun Street. 

Officers said they arrived at the residence and had to put out a small fire, and found McCuiston's body with a gunshot wound.

Troy Link, the Moberly interim police chief, addressed the incident at a 4 p.m. news conference at Moberly City Hall. Link said officials have identified suspects and are currently interviewing people of interest and witnesses.

"This investigation has been ruled a homicide by the Randolph County Coroner, who has also requested that an autopsy be conducted at the earliest convenience of the Boone County Medical Examiners office," Link said.

Officials confirmed the autopsy is scheduled for Monday. 

One neighbor, Connie Smith, said the home where the body was found has been vacant since it came under new ownership in the spring. She said there had been a few contractors seen inspecting the home, but no one had moved in.

"It used to be a real quiet neighborhood," she said. "There didn't use to be a whole lot of people living here. It's getting, like every neighborhood in the United States, it's getting a little worst."

Police did not release a motive for the homicide.

One gas station employee KOMU 8 News spoke with said she heard a single gunshot around 6 a.m., and police arrived on the scene an hour later.

Editor's note: The spelling of the suspect's name has been corrected.

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