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Transient's body found in camper parked on Lund Avenue
The partially decomposed body of a transient was found Aug. 31 in a camper near the John L. Scott real estate office on Lund Avenue.
The dead man, Richard J. Tietge, was a 61-year-old registered sex offender who frequently stood near the Starbucks on Lund Ave. with a sign saying that he was looking for work.
An employee at John L. Scott reported, Aug. 30, that she hadn’t seen him at his regular corner in several days.
He also hadn’t followed a routine he’d established of leaving his truck and camper in the John L. Scott parking lot for three days, then moving it to the Walmart parking lot for three days, the reporting party said.
Deputies visited the camper two days in a row before finding the body.
At the first welfare check, Aug. 30, they didn’t see Tietge inside the camper.
They knocked on the door and called Tietge’s name for “an extensive period of time” without hearing a response. They tried to open the door, and it was locked. They looked in the windows but couldn’t see anyone.
The camper smelled like cigarettes and had a “musty dirty odor,” one of the deputies wrote in his report.
Deputies decided to revisit the camper the next day if Tietge didn’t show up for a weekly meeting that’s mandatory for transient registered sex offenders.
Tietge missed the meeting and the deputies went back to the truck.
They used an “unlocking device” to force an entry into the passenger side door of the truck, a silver 1992 Chevrolet pickup.
From there, they looked into the camper and saw Tietge lying on the floor, “obviously unresponsive,” according to a deputy’s report.
The deputies forced an entry into the camper, where “the odor of death and decomposition was overwhelming,” according to one deputy.
Tietge was laying on the floor “with his head up against the toilet door pointing towards the camper door,” according to a report.
“There was no sign of injury to the body,” according to another deputy.
The truck and camper were impounded for safekeeping, “as all of Tietge’s possessions were inside and also because it presented a bio hazard to the passing public.”