KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – A soldier returned home from deployment overseas died after being tied up and shot repeatedly.
The mother of Jacob Dean Bishop, 35, found him dead around 7:30 a.m. Oct. 1 inside his duplex apartment.
“He was known to oversleep,” Loudon County Sheriff Tim Guider said. “She had tried to call him, and he didn’t answer.”
After a knock yielded no answer, the mother used a spare key to open the door, walked inside and found her son’s body on the living room floor, Guider said.
Bishop, the father of two children, served in the 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment of the Tennessee Army National Guard, according to his obituary. Soldiers of the regiment returned in May after serving nine months in Poland as part of an initiative to boost NATO’s presence in the region.
Tuesday, investigators asked for tips from the public about a vehicle that might be connected to Bishop’s killing.
Witnesses reported seeing a white SUV in the area in the days leading up to the killing, and the vehicle was seen leaving the area the day Bishop died.
“We continue to work tirelessly and around the clock to bring the party, or parties, responsible for the murder of a U.S. soldier to justice and to provide the Bishop family with some form of closure,” Guider said.
Bishop’s fiancée, Brittany Kindred, wrote an emotional Facebook post after his funeral. She recalled kissing Bishop after his plane landed in Tennessee and said she kissed him one last time before laying him to rest Monday.
“My children and I stood side by side with his blood relation and not (related), all united as a whole family to honor a man we all loved so dearly,” Kindred wrote. “This loss is unlike any. My heart is shattered and crumbles even more as I watch my boys cry and ask questions.
“They don’t understand. None of us do. All we can do is stand united and push forward to keep this fight for justice for Jay going strong.”
Investigators suspect Bishop’s killing was not random but have not commented on a motive. They asked anyone with information to call the Loudon County Sheriff’s Office at 865-986-4823.
Follow Travis Dorman on Twitter @travdorman.
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