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Neighbors react to death investigation in La Crosse

Neighbors react to death investigation in La Crosse

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - The body of a Black River Falls man was discovered early this morning in an alley just south of Downtown La Crosse.

Police have identified the man as 37-year-old Jordan Valentino of Black River Falls.

The body was found in the alley near the 400 block on Ferry Street.

"My roommate and I, we were home and I was actually asleep at the time and she just walked outside because she couldn't sleep, so she was going to go out for a drive and she walked out the front door and she saw this body and so she obviously  freaked out and called 911 right away," said Melanie Uecker, a La Crosse resident and witness.

When officers arrived, they found Valentino's body lying face down in an alley.

Witnesses say they saw what appeared to be bruises on his body, but police say there's no obvious signs of trauma that would point to Valentino's cause of death.

"It was on like the front and back of him and on his stomach and on his back so I guess we were wondering how they got there too and how we didn't hear anything last night when we were sleeping," said Sarah Achenbach, a La Crosse resident and  witness.

"At this particular point in time there is no obvious Trauma that the investigators can see on the body, we've got an autopsy scheduled to try to determine the nature of the death, cause of the death," said Captain Jason Melby with the La Crosse Police Department.

Robin Gibb, who has lived in this part of La Crosse for 20 years, said it was the first time he's ever experienced something like this so close to home.

"It was 6:40 and I came out of my house and I saw a police car sitting here at the end of the alley and some yellow tape and I walked down and looked in the alley and there was a person lying on his back with a cloth on his face," said Gibb, who witnessed the incident.

Police say  patrols happen at all hours of the night in that neighborhood and an officer was driving in the area around 2:30 a.m.

"And they didn't notice anything suspicious and they didn't notice anyone laying in the alley at that particular point in time, so you know approximately two hours later we received the call," Melby said.

La Crosse police are asking anyone who has been in contact with Valentino in the last 48 hours to call 785-5962.

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