New Clues Could Help Solve Kentwood Couple’s Murder

Posted at 7:47 PM, Jan 10, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-11 03:58:26-05

KENTWOOD, Mich. — A new sketch is providing the latest lead on who may have killed Vivian and David Bouwman.

Investigators believe the elderly couple was killed in their Kentwood home late Friday or early Saturday during a break-in.

The sketch comes from a witness who saw two men standing by the couple’s Cadillac around the time it was burned in an apartment complex parking lot in Wyoming.

“I appreciate it takes some courage to come forward and make this identification,” Kentwood Police Chief Tom Hillen said.

The witness was unable to get a good description of the other man. However, police say the sketch of at least one of the men may be enough to provide another missing link in the case.

Witnesses from the complex remember seeing an orange Home Depot bucket that was sitting by the car before it burned.

After FOX 17 aired images of the  bucket earlier in the week, witnesses started coming forward.

They told police they saw the bucket around the apartment complex.

That bucket tested positive for accelerant.

“Since you ran your news broadcast in regards to the bucket, we had additional people call specifically indicating they had seen the Cadillac,” said Hillen.  “And, there was at least two people in the vehicle so we know there are other people who either participated or saw what was going on.”

Witnesses also spotted two men in the Cadillac driving near the Arbor Park Apartments building before it was torched.

Hillen says the best tips are coming from the arson scene because the sun was up and people were awake and active and able to notice suspicious behavior.

Although they couldn’t get any fingerprints off the bucket, they did analyze the car to see if there was any information there.

“They did do some sampling and forensic review of the vehicle,” said Hillen.

As family and friends continue to grieve and remember the Bouwman’s, Hillen hopes the sketch will help the public to provide the missing piece of the puzzle so they can close in on justice for the family.

“This individual may only be involved in the torching of the vehicle and not involved in the murder itself,” said Hillen. “It would be in that person’s best interest to call us and tell us what they  know and what they’re involvement is and that’s what we’re hoping happens.”

Kentwood Police say the man in the sketch is described by the witness as an African-American man with lighter skin in his late 30s. He had a beard with grey hairs in it. The witness reported that he was wearing a tan hat and red scarf.  If you have any information, Contact Kentwood Police.