Man's Body Found In Abandoned Well

Tuesday, February 27th 2007, 4:09 pm
By: News On 6

ROOSEVELT, Okla. (AP) -- Investigators believe the body of a man discovered Monday night in an abandoned well in Kiowa County is that of a missing Cache man killed in a dispute over drugs.

Comanche County Sheriff Kenny Stradley said Tuesday he is "99 percent sure" the man will be identified as Shawn Leroy Humphrey, a 31-year-old who has been missing since Jan. 30.

The investigation led to the arrests of two material witnesses – Shawn Edward Fowler, 31, and Michael Curtis Price, 28 -- who sit in the Comanche County jail on unrelated charges.

"This is a tremendous break -- the biggest piece to the puzzle," Stradley said. "We've brought everyone in here we thought might have some information, and we're going to be calling all them back in here now.

"I think someone is going to be singing a different tune now that we have a body."

Fowler and Price, whom Stradley described as Humphrey's "associates," both were arrested Feb. 8 by sheriff's deputies. Price was charged with possession of a firearm after a felony conviction, while Fowler was charged with operating a methamphetamine lab out of his van.

Fowler admitted shooting Humphrey Jan. 30 near Indiahoma in a drug dispute, Stradley said. But the suspect reportedly told investigators he was so high on drugs, he had no idea where the body was dumped.

"The shooter (Fowler) claims it was self-defense," Stradley said.

A tipster led investigators to the abandoned well in Kiowa County, Stradley said.

"There was a large rock on top of the well," Stradley said. "And when we looked down into the well, we couldn't see anything because it was so dark. But when we shined a flashlight into the well, we could see the body clearly ... his face buried in the water."

An autopsy will be conducted by the state Medical Examiner's Office to determine the cause of death and identification.