Kathy Fortner homicide investigation continues

By: Alicia Gentile Email
By: Alicia Gentile Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- It's been exactly one week since a woman's body was discovered at the base of the Colorado National Monument and as the Mesa County Sheriff''s Office continues it's investigation into what happened to Kathy Fortner, many others are wondering the same things.

The Mesa County Sheriff's Office says the homicide investigation for 49-year-old Kathy Fortner is still active and on-going and says there have been no arrests in the case. Now, we're learning more about the victim in the case and who she may have been living with here in Grand Junction.

I spoke with neighbors of Kathy Fortner today and they say she was living with a man named David. I showed them a picture from the Colorado Department of Corrections of a David Norman and they say that's the man she was living with. Norman is in the Mesa County Jail right now, on a parole violation.

“I wondered if he had been arrested, is what I thought," said Peggy Chambers, who lives near Fortner’s residence.

Peggy Chambers has seen many neighbors come and go in the 35 years she has owned her house off North Avenue and remembers the day Kathy Fortner moved nearby.

“Not long after I moved in, well I spoke, [to Fortner] but we didn't get together any and she always seemed busy doing house work and things like that," said Chambers.

Chambers didn't recall the name of the man who lived with Fortner, but Corey Danner who shared the duplex with the pair, did.

“He came over and introduced himself and all that- we knew each other," said Danner.

Danner said David Norman lived next door to him and resided with Fortner.

“She stayed at home all day and he was doing jobs on the side, whatever he could do. Construction, I guess, but yeah she stayed at home all day," said Danner.

Norman is currently in the Mesa County Jail on parole violation and therefore not able to bond out.

He was arrested in 2002 on robbery and assault charges and sentenced to 16 years in the department of corrections. According to the Colorado Department of Corrections, in February of 2012 he was released on parole.

He originally served parole in Mississippi, but nine months after, around November of 2012, he transferred to Grand Junction.

Danner did not witness Norman's arrest, but was interviewed by the Mesa County Sheriff's Office and so was his girlfriend. He says his girlfriend saw Norman's car being towed away, the day Fortner's body was discovered.

“My lady went to work and she saw him in his truck and they came and asked us questions and he came back to the house and that's when he towed his truck so yeah they kinda just abruptly left," said Danner.

Online records show Kathy Fortner will be buried tomorrow in Mississippi, where according to the article, she grew up. It says she moved to Grand Junction in November of 2012.

The Mesa County Sheriff's Office says they're still conducting interviews and collecting information for the case. They say multiple people in Kathy's life are possible suspects at this point, and they haven't been able to rule anyone out- it's just too early in the process. And they say, no one has been arrested for this crime.

The Mesa County Sheriff's Office asks anyone with information about the incident to call a tip line they've set up, that number is 244-3263.


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