After 18-month investigation, Merrill man charged with stabbing his father to deathSubmitted: 07/19/2017
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter

After 18-month investigation, Merrill man charged with stabbing his father to death
MERRILL - As soon as two days after police found 55-year-old Kevin Monroe dead in a Merrill home in January 2016, they started treating the death as a homicide.

But for the next year and a half, no one was charged in the case.

That changed on Friday, when the county prosecutor charged Monroe's 21-year-old son, Tyler, with his father's murder.

Investigators found Kevin Monroe dead in his home on Wisconsin Street on January 12, 2016, with 26 stab wounds in his body. They arrested his son, Tyler, that same day after Tyler crashed his father's car in rural Lincoln County. Until now, Tyler Monroe had only faced more minor weapons charges.

Kevin Monroe's employer, Northern Wire, told police he had missed just two days of work in his six-month tenure there. But when he didn't show up for work for an entire week in early January 2016, the company fired him.

Soon after, a family member found Kevin Monroe's dead body, and another called police.

In addition to other felonies, Tyler Monroe is now charged with murdering Kevin and hiding his body in the apartment they sometimes shared.

Police found Kevin Monroe's body in a bedroom whose door had been sealed, with a window open in the freezing winter cold. An autopsy later determined the four stab wounds to his liver were deadly. The State Crime Lab found blood traces showing Kevin's body had been dragged from the kitchen to the living room to the bedroom.

A downstairs neighbor told police, "Kevin's apartment became unusually quiet starting on the evening of January 4, 2016." A week later, the same neighbor came to the apartment, got suspicious, and tried to enter the bedroom. The neighbor later told police that "[Tyler Monroe] held a gun to her head and said something along the lines of 'If you tell anyone what you saw, you and your family will be next.'"

Tyler Monroe is accused of crashing his father's car in rural Lincoln County the next day and running from police, who eventually found him around 11 p.m. He was arrested on an unrelated warrant, and later charged for the eight guns police found in his car.

The criminal complaint doesn't lay out a clear motive for the alleged murder, but Tyler Monroe and his father may have had a rocky relationship. Kevin Monroe told a coworker he didn't trust his son, because Tyler was "huffing chemicals," according to the criminal complaint.

Tyler Monroe was formally charged in early 2017 for weapons possession and bail jumping. As a convicted felon, he isn't allowed to have firearms. A June 29 hearing in that case found Tyler Monroe mentally competent to stand trial. The murder charges were filed July 14.

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