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La. police chief's hotel room death ruled a suicide

Travis Anthony Crouch, 46, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head

By Robin Fitzgerald
The Sun Herald

BILOXI — The fatal shooting of the Morgan City, La., police chief Friday night at a Biloxi casino hotel has been ruled a suicide.

Travis Anthony Crouch, 46, died of a self-inflicted gunshot, Harrison County Coroner Gary Hargrove said Monday. Crouch had a single wound to his head.

Travis Anthony Crouch. (Photo courtesy Morgan City Police Department)
Travis Anthony Crouch. (Photo courtesy Morgan City Police Department)

Crouch was a 22-year veteran of the Morgan City Police Department and had been the city's chief of police nearly a year.
Biloxi police investigators are trying to find answers that could help Crouch's family and friends, Detective Sgt. Christopher De Back said.

"We are still processing some things that may or may not give answers, but it could take more than a week," De Back said. "Morgan City police have been very supportive and helpful."

Crouch had come to Biloxi with a group of friends who had separate hotel rooms at the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino.
"He was found in the room that he rented by one of the people in his party," De Back said.

Police were notified of the shooting about 11:05 p.m. Friday.

Police questioned his friends and people in adjoining hotel rooms, but foul play is not suspected, De Back said.

Morgan City's mayor and assistant police chief held a news conference Saturday at their city hall. The city, with a population of about 12,400, is on the banks of the Atchafalaya River.

Mayor Frank "Boo" Grizzaffi described the loss as "a tough blow" to the city, according to The Daily Review newspaper in Morgan City. Crouch joined the police department in 1991 and became its police chief Feb. 26.

Morgan City officials said Crouch had made many positive changes in the police department, was known as a communicator and had implemented a drug task force.

Recalling Crouch's interview for the job, Grizzaffi said, "He was confident that he had the ability to make things happen. He laid out a plan, and in his first year, he delivered."

Officials are making plans to allow city employees to attend Crouch's funeral, The Daily Review said.

Funeral services will be Friday in Morgan City.

Copyright 2014 The Sun Herald

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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