Family members discovered a grim scene at the home of Michelle Brewer on Monday evening, March 28.
The lifeless bodies of Brewer, 46, and family friend Jesse Willard “Willie” Bowling, 51, were found on the floor of the kitchen area in the single-wide mobile home. Both had died at the scene of multiple gunshots, advised Scott County Coroner Jerry Buchanan.
Sheriff Dan McClain advised in an interview on Wednesday morning, March 30, that no signs of forced entry were found at the mobile home. The victims' clothed bodies bore no other signs of violence or conflict.
Bowling had been living with Brewer at the residence, located perhaps a mile west of the Scott/Jefferson County line on a winding stretch of State Road 356. A wide gravel driveway leads to the mobile home, a simple light gray structure with its front door painted red to match window shutters and the wood front porch. A small wood wishing well, a bench and a few other yard decorations had been placed near the front porch, which bordered on a small flower bed containing spring flowers on one side.
One neighbor interviewed by Louisville television media described the area as “...quiet and peaceful...,” and its views of a variety of large and modest homes tucked into woods and on pasture-like lawns promise just that to the casual motorist.
Sheriff McClain declined to speculate on what led up to the violent deaths of Brewer and her friend. The mobile home was combed for clues, Indiana State Police lending a welcome hand from the beginning of the investigation.
Detectives, other officers and the sheriff stayed on the job throughout that first night of investigation. The bodies were sent early Tuesday to the Medical Examiner's Office in Louisville. Sheriff McClain and others were on hand during the autopsies that were performed that same morning.
He said he learned from family members that they had not heard from Michelle for a short while and became concerned. When the bodies were discovered, relatives called 9-1-1.
The hesitation in naming Bowling as the second victim was due to the man having had no identification on him at the time of his death. His relatives later confirmed his identity, the Sheriff stated.
Sheriff McClain's office was nearly overrun with officers on Wednesday as the investigation progressed. “We are continuing to interview people, and we are continuing to follow leads. No tip is too small for us to consider; we appreciate information from the public so that we can track down who killed these people as quickly as possible,” McClain said.
The Sheriff's Department can be reached by calling 812-752-8400 during the day or through its confidential, 24-hour Tip Line at 812-752-7898. The Sellersburg post of the Indiana State Police can be reached at 1-800-872-6743.
Brewer's relatives went on TV on Tuesday evening, asking people to call with information. The woman's sister and her teenage daughter also urged the person/persons responsible for their deaths to turn themselves in to authorities.
Funeral arrangements for Brewer and Bowling were made by their families at Collins Funeral Home in Scottsburg.