Officials: Death not random

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ Staff

Investigators believe Clovis store owner Emmett Salisbury was shot and killed Sunday night based on statements gathered from friends, acquaintances and witnesses, District Attorney Matt Chandler said.

Salisbury, 36, was found dead just after 1 p.m. Monday in a second-hand store at 701 E. Grand Ave. He was found by his boyfriend and business partner, according to the police report.

“Mr. Salisbury was in his store (Sunday evening). The information that has been received is leading to the fact that Mr. Salisbury was most likely shot Sunday evening,” Chandler said.

Chandler said specific people are being sought for questioning in connection with the shooting, but he declined to say how many or if they are suspects or witnesses. He also would not comment on whether the boyfriend and business partner is a suspect.

“There were eye-witnesses that are able to describe the individuals that were in or around Mr. Salisbury’s business during the time of the shooting,” Chandler said.

There had been no arrests made in the case by late Wednesday, Chandler said.

Although Chandler declined comment on a possible motive, police do not believe it was a random act of violence, he said.

Chandler said multiple search warrants have been served, but declined to elaborate. The warrants have been sealed to protect people who have provided information to law enforcement, he said.

“We need to protect the eye witnesses and citizens in regards to statements and information they have provided. It becomes our duty to make sure that the eye witnesses and citizens are safe,” he said.

An autopsy conducted Tuesday revealed Salisbury died from a single gunshot that struck his heart, police said.

A parallel investigation is being conducted into a large quantity of drugs found in the office of the store by police, Chandler said.

“At this point the narcotic transactions that had possibly taken place in and around that location are under investigation. … Whether the (homicide) was a direct result of the narcotics is information that cannot be released,” Chandler said.