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April 2014


Warrant issued in Smith murder

Police are asking for information about the whereabouts of Justin Patrick Welch, 26, of Stockton, Calif., in connection with the murder earlier this month of Kim Smith of Oconomowoc.

The Waukesha County Sheriff's Department has issued a warrant for his arrest in connection with the murder. He is also wanted on a felony parole violation in California.

Welch is described as a white male with blonde hair and green eyes. He weighs about 190 pounds and is about 5 feet 8 inches tall.

Welch's DNA was found on evidence at the murder scene, authorities said at a press conference this afternoon.

Authorities in California and Wisconsin are investigating how Welch might be connected with the murder.

Oconomowoc Police Chief Dave Beguhn said his department was reinterviewing everyone associated with the investigation thus far to see if they know anything about Welch.

Smith's family has been briefed have been shown a photo of Welch, but do not recognize him.

Welch was last seen in California in July. He was driving a stolen 2007 gold Jeep Patriot, with California plate 5Y0M243.

It is unknown whether he is in the Lake Country area now. Beguhn said Welch should be considered armed and dangerous. If you see him or have any information, you are encouraged to contact the Police Department.

Beguhn also said that although a warrant has been issued for Welch, no one has been eliminated as a person of interest in the case.

 Check back on Lake Country Watch and see Thursday's issue of the Oconomowoc Focus for a photo of Welch and more information.

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