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Neighbors Say Murder Suspect Was 'Normal Guy'

February 2, 2012, 4:55 PM by Hailey Higgins

Neighbors Say Murder Suspect Was 'Normal Guy'
WATERTOWN, SD - Carl Ericsson, 73, lived on a quiet Watertown street aptly named Harmony Lane. It was here where police arrested him for allegedly shooting and killing 72-year-old Norman Johnson in Madison on Tuesday night. 

Ericsson's home is three blocks from Jefferson Elementary School and within yards of Watertown Christian School. That's where Anita Bogue's two children go everyday.

"He's just as close to Jefferson, you know," Bogue said. "But it is just surprising that he's living in this community and right so close to a school."

Neighbors tell us they are surprised that the friendly man with white hair could be behind the murder of a retired Madison teacher. And while many neighbors don't want to talk on camera, they say Ericsson seemed like a normal guy.

Neighbors say Ericsson lived in Watertown with his wife for several years. They say police were at the property for most of the day Wednesday when he was arrested and police towed his maroon car.

"I just wonder what's going on in this man's life and in his heart and if he has any mental health problems," Bogue said. 

While she knows her children were never in danger at their nearby school, Bogue says her heart goes out to both the Johnson and Ericsson families.

"I hope justice prevails," Bogue said.

Neighbors say Ericsson was originally from Madison and lived in Wyoming for several years before he and his wife moved to Watertown.

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