PULASKI COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - A person of interest in the murder of a Somerset woman has killed before.
Police are not calling Dwight Mitchell Bell a suspect, but they do want to talk with him about the killing of Carolyn New. The pastor of Denham Street Baptist Church found New's body in the fellowship hall last week. She was cleaning when police say someone murdered her.
On Wednesday afternoon, investigators announced they are trying to find 41-year-old Bell who they believe he may be in the Indianapolis-area. On Thursday, police issued a warrant for his arrest on a theft charge, accusing him of stealing the victim's vehicle.
Bell has served time in Kentucky for murder before. Court records showed in October 1999, Dwight Bell pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter, tampering with physical evidence, and wanton endangerment in connection with his father's death. Bell shot his father, Roger Bell, in the back of the head with a 12-gauge shotgun and also shot at his estranged girlfriend. Police initially charged Bell with murder, but he pleaded to a lesser charge.
A judge sentenced him to a 15-year prison sentence. The Department of Corrections (DOC) says new had 233 days credit for time-served before his conviction. He got parole in June of 2005.
The DOC says Bell returned to their custody in April 2008 for violating his parole. He served until October 1, 2012, when authorities released him on supervision. He completed his period of supervision in March 2013.
Authorities in Indianapolis shared with police in Kentucky that Bell was spotted last Friday at a Shapiro's and a Speedway. Police in Indianapolis also say he may be homeless and staying at shelters.
New's son, Jonathan, says he's glad police are making progress in their investigation.
"Hopefully the person will be caught. I thought the police have done a great and excellent job. They have been working very hard. Very diligently, non-stop. Maybe we are getting close to figuring out who did this," New said.