Body in river is Reserve man

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 30, 2008


Staff Reporter

RESERVE – St. John authorities are investigating the parish’s fifth homicide of the year, after the body of a Mt. Airy man, found bound and gagged with tape, was recovered from the Mississippi river last Friday evening, said a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office.

The body of Alfred Love, 47, was discovered around 7:35 p.m., floating in the river near Reserve by a tugboat operator working near the Port of South Louisiana, said Maj. Mike Tregre, public information officer for the Sheriff’s Office.

According to Tregre, Love was found with his hands taped behind his back, and tape over his mouth. He also said Love’s ankles were taped together.

An autopsy conducted in New Orleans the following day determined the cause of death to be asphyxiation, and said that the body had been floating in the river for about a week.

Tregre said that authorities identified Love through fingerprints that were on file with State Police. He said the Sheriff’s Office had been working jointly with the State Police crime lab to identify the body.

According to a Sheriff’s Office report, Love was recovered wearing a blue jumpsuit, with red and white shoes. Tregre said Love had not been reported missing, and detectives are trying to determine where Love was last seen.

Tregre said investigators have not determined a motive in the case. He said it is also unclear whether Love drowned in the water or if he was killed and then dumped in the river.

Love’s body is the second to be recovered from the Mississippi river in St. John Parish this year. The headless body of a St. James Parish woman was pulled from the river near Reserve on April 7. The deaths are unrelated.  

Anyone with any information that may be helpful to the investigation into Love’s death should contact Det. Sgt. Ricardo Colas with the St. John Sheriff’s Office at 985-652-6338.