Police Investigate Central Fresno Homicide

July 30, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Fresno Police Detectives were working through the early morning hours on Friday gathering evidence in an apparent homicide.Police were called to the 500 block of Ferger, which is near Palm and Belmont, early Thursday afternoon. Maria Ramos called police after seeing a suspicious man leaving the house across the street from her. When police arrived they found the body of a man in the house. Lt. Tom Rowe says there were "obvious signs of trauma" on the body.

A short time later police detained a man who was seen jumping over fences in the neighborhood. Police have not said if he is a possible suspect in the apparent homicide.

Police have not identified the body found in the home, but neighbors and friends told Action News the house belongs to Art Lopez. The newly renovated house stands out in this modest neighborhood because it's painted bright red. Contractor Brad Hardie, who worked on the house told Action News that Lopez spent a great deal of money fixing the place up. Hardie said Lopez operates a medical insurance fraud investigation company.

Hardie says Lopez moved into the house about six months ago, with a partner. That relationship ended about a month ago. Since then, Hardie said, Lopez had a niece and possibly other members of his extended family staying with him. Maria Ramos described Lopez as a "very nice man, a good neighbor."

Lopez' black Porsche Boxster remained parked in front of the house early Friday morning as teams of detectives and members of the department's Crime Scene Bureau worked inside the home.

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