On Wednesday, November 27, 2013, the charred and unrecognizable bodies of Reginald Tuttle, 51, Kim Tuttle, 55, and their daughter, Dawn Roderick, 33 were found in their burned-out home.
According to the Pueblo Chieftain, police said the victims were shot before the house was set ablaze.
On Monday, Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office announced the Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. Marshals have joined the search for their prime suspect in the murders, Harry Mapps, 59.
Reginald Tuttle owned Reginald Tuttle Express in Rye, Colorado. Mapps was living in the Tuttle’s home and working as a dispatcher for the company.
The Denver Post reports that Mapps’ estranged wife, Sandy Martin, 52, said Mapps had moved from their him in Texas six months ago to go live in Rye with his longtime friends.
Martin told the Denver Post that Mapps has has a drinking problem. In 2009, Mapps lost his job as a truck driver after being arrested for a DWI.
Martin told the publication that she does not believe her husband is a violent man, however, on the morning of the murders, Mapps was caught on camera cashing two $4,000 checks out of the Tuttle’s account. In addition, a witness saw Mapps at the house the morning of the murders.
Mapps was originally a “person of interest in the case,” but now authorities are calling him a suspect in the triple homicide, the Pueblo Chieftain reported.
But a week ago, the Tuttles asked Mapps to leave their home, Pueblo County sheriff’s investigators have said.
Pueblo County Sheriff Kirk Taylor said he believes money was the motive for the killings. Another possible motive, Taylor said, is that Mapps was likely asked to move out to make room for Roderick and her three children.
Taylor said Mapps has likely left the area. A nationwide manhunt is now underway.
“Every indication so far is he’s left the state, but that’s educated speculation,” Taylor said.
“Mapps is described as 6-foot tall, 135 pounds, with red hair and blue eyes. He may have a graying beard and was last known to drive a blue 2004 Chrysler Town and Country van,” the Pueblo Chieftain reported. The van may have Colorado plate 591SBL or Texas plate 7-FSNK.
A warrant for an unrelated charge has been issued for Mapps.
Sheriff Taylor said the warrants, although not for homicide at this time are extraditable nationwide and even into Canada. “Harry Mapps is believed to be armed and dangerous and new bulletins have been sent to all local and national law enforcement outlets. It seems the victims were shot while they slept resulting in their death. It would appear the motive for the crime was financial and the evidence only leads to one person being involved in all necessary aspects of the crime and that is Harry Mapps.”
Sources: Pueblo Chieftain
Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office