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Pa. man found slain in Hagerstown

August 25, 1997

By MARLO BARNHART

Staff Writer

The body of a 25-year-old Waynesboro, Pa., man, who had been shot once in the head, was found at 12:23 this morning face up in a parking lot to the rear of 23 E. Washington St., Hagerstown City Police said.

Matthew Roy Hovis, of 24 W. Main St., Apt. 4, was taken to Washington County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 4:08 a.m.

It is Hagerstown's third homicide of 1997.

There were so suspects as of press time, City Police Sgt. Rick Johnson said.

Johnson confirmed this morning that a witness told police she heard a "pop'' and saw two men running from the area just before the body was found in the parking lot in downtown Hagerstown.

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"We believe that others in the area must have heard or seen something,'' said Johnson, who is heading up the investigation.

The Adult Book Store, which is located at 23 E. Washington St., was still open at the time the body was found, Johnson said.

Johnson and other detectives returned to the scene shortly after 8 this morning to continue the investigation.

Hovis was described as a white man, with dark hair, 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighing 180 pounds. He was wearing a black long-sleeved sweatshirt and blue jeans.

His vehicle, a white 1990 Chevrolet Geo with a pink stripe on the side was found in the area where the body was found, Johnson said.

Hovis' parents were contacted and came to Hagerstown to speak with police early this morning, Johnson said.

"They went home after we talked with them,'' Johnson said.

Hovis' father, Richard Hovis, was formerly with the Waynesboro Borough Police, leaving that employment in the 1970s, police there said this morning.

Attempts to reach the parents this morning were unsuccessful.

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