Suspect: investigators need public assistance finding murder suspects

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UPDATE, Nov. 9, 8:14 a.m. — Police have identified three suspects they believe may have murdered 61-year-old Vidor resident Eric Stansbury on Oct. 25, including a previously unidentified woman in a photo released to the public last week, reports Criminal Investigator Janois Strause Grizzaffi of the Orange County Sheriff's Office. 

The woman, who is a person of interest in the murder, has been identified by the Abbeville Police Department as 19-year-old Amber L. Lee of Abbeville, Louisiana. The two males, whose identities were known to investigators, have been identified as 36-year-old Kenton Crooms and 37-year-old Robert Crooms of Abbeville, Louisiana. The two males are brothers and reportedly have ties to the Houston area. 

Detectives believe the trio may have stopped somewhere along Interstate 10 as they traveled eastbound into Louisiana on the morning of Tuesday, October 25 between the hours of 4:15 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. The Abbeville Police is asking that anyone who may have seen these individuals or the vehicles they were driving, a blue Ford F-250 or a gray 2016 Dodge 4-door truck, contact them at (337) 898-4214.

Original Story:

Investigators with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and the Abbeville Police Department need the public’s help in locating suspects they believe may have been responsible for the murder of 61-year-old Eric Stansbury of Vidor.

According to a news release from OCSO Criminal Investigator Janois Strause Grizzaffi, Stansbury left his residence at approximately 4 a.m. on Oct. 25 to go to work in Beaumont. He never arrived. His body was later found inside his truck, a blue Ford F-250, which had been abandoned in a vacant lot in Abbeville, Louisiana. It appeared Stansbury had been shot to death.

After obtaining several leads, Abbeville Police Department Detectives believe Stansbury encountered the suspects, who had run out of gas, somewhere along Interstate 10 between Highway 1132 and Main Street, also known as F.M. 105, in Vidor. Some type of altercation may have occurred that led to Stansbury being taken against his will, possibly leaving a work boot and a cowboy hat at the crime scene, according to investigators. 

The suspects were reportedly driving a gray 2016 Dodge 4-door truck with red or blue colored pallets in the bed of the truck. Detectives wish to speak to anyone who may have seen the victim's or suspects’ trucks along the road or at a convenience store in Vidor, or possibly even in the Beaumont area, between 4 a.m. and approximately 7 a.m. The suspects could have been buying gas and possibly garbage bags, detectives suggest. The suspect's truck was later seen following Stansbury's truck eastbound in Lake Charles at about 8 a.m.

Grizzaffi asks that anyone with information that could assist detectives in this case contact the Orange County Sheriff's Office at (409) 670-4125 or, to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at (409) 833-TIPS (8477). 

Stansbury was a Port Arthur native, raised in Port Acres and a longtime resident of Vidor, according to his obituary. He worked as a pipefitter for RCI in Beaumont at the time of his death.