Investigators go door to door talking to Forney neighbors of killed DA

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by TODD UNGER

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WFAA

Posted on March 31, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 1 at 12:42 PM

Kaufman DA murdered

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FORNEY -- It may sound cliche, but this kind of thing just doesn't happen in Forney -- let alone this neighborhood, where most of the last 24 hours have been gripped by fear.

Investigators from the FBI and other local agencies began a widespread door-to-door questioning of residents Sunday afternoon, searching for any clues as to who is behind the brutal double murder of Kaufman County District attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, in the 9300 block of Blarney Stone Way.

"They were asking if I saw anything suspicious," said Mike Griffith.

Specifically, he said FBI agents asked about cell phone numbers. Another neighbor confirmed the same thing, saying agents were going to review local calls from the weekend to see if any seemed out of the ordinary.

Griffith said he heard gunshots early Saturday morning. His yard backs up to the crime scene.

"It was five or six shots, one right after the other," Griffith said, adding he didn't call 911, because it's not uncommon to hear gunfire in the more rural area of unincorporated Kaufman County.

The crime has shaken the small town.

"I think we take for granted a lot of things, and when they hit close to home, the awareness really goes up," said resident Jim Norbeck.

The couple was popular in the area; public faces that a lot of folks recognized in Forney and the surroudning small towns, which amount to about 40,000 people. 

Sunday afternoon, the mayor of Forney urged everyone to be vigilant but try to remain calm, saying all indications are the killing wasn't random.

"The entire Forney community, while we feel the impact of it, I don't' think we need to walk around in fear," said Mayor Darren Rozell.

Investigators believe the double murder is related to the murder of Kaufman County Assistant District Attorney Mark Hasse on Jan. 31.

But even the mayor admits, there are just so many questions.

"You can't make sense of it," he said.

The the 9300 block of Blarney Stone Way is expected be closed off all night Sunday.

E-mail tunger@wfaa.com

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