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Police: La Crosse double murder suspect stole camera equipment from scene

Police line graphic copyright Midwest Communications, Inc.
Police line graphic copyright Midwest Communications, Inc.

LA CROSSE, WI (WTAQ) - La Crosse Police now say a Minnesota man stole $16,000 worth of camera equipment when he killed two people in a photography store.

Police Chief Ron Tischer told reporters Thursday morning that a surveillance video showed 39-year-old Jeffrey Lepsch entering and leaving May’s Photo, while driving a blue van.

The chief said investigators traced the vehicle to the Lepsch home in Dakota Minnesota – and they recovered 14 pieces of camera equipment which belonged to May’s Photo.

56-year-old shop-owner Paul Petras and his 19-year-old A.J. were shot to death at their store on September 15th.

A warrant issued Wednesday charged Lepsch with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide – and Lepsch did not resist when he was arrested outside his home. Two additional charges were filed Thursday morning – armed robbery, and possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.

An extradition hearing was scheduled in Winona Minnesota, to try and get the suspect to return to Wisconsin to face his charges.

Lepsch spent a year in jail after he was arrested in 2003 for stealing thousands of dollars in merchandise from an Ace Hardware distribution center in La Crosse