Neighbors worry after weekend murder in Winnebago County - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Neighbors worry after weekend murder in Winnebago County

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Chad Renato looks across the street at neighbor's house and murder scene. Chad Renato looks across the street at neighbor's house and murder scene.
WINNEBAGO COUNTY (WREX) -

A family mourns the loss of a man shot and killed inside his home on Rockford's far west side just outside the city limits. The whole situation has neighbors on edge. Neighbors say their area out past Auburn High School used to be far enough from the city they did not have any problems with crime but it's changed the last year.

"My house got broken into a few months ago, I put in all new locks," says Shannon McManus, neighbor.

She was neighbors and friends with William "Sammy" Presley. The Winnebago County Sheriff's Department says the 47-year-old was found dead in his garage at 1421 La Belle Avenue. He was shot more than once in the torso. According to McManus and some of the other neighbors, Presley was pretty stand-offish and slow to trust... So it was very surprising that someone was able to kill him in his own home.

"He was a hard guy to get along with but I don't know why anyone would want to murder him, you know," say Chad Renato, neighbor.

"I can tell you that he lived alone, that he had a little business, an electrical business that he ran from his property there," say Deputy Chief Dominic, Winnebago County Sheriff's Department.

Investigators are trying to figure out when Presley was killed. The autopsy report says he was likely dead 12 to 18 hours before he was found. Police say they are not even sure why he was shot. That thought made it hard for at least one neighbor to sleep.

"I'm definitely scared, I was up all night. We're like 'are these people coming back?'" says McManus.

The sheriff's department says Presley leaves behind a child. It is still looking for information in his death. If you know anything you can call the department at (815) 319-4700 or Crime Stoppers at (815) 963-STOP.

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