Man arrested one year after his wife's death

March 06, 1994|By Peter Hermann | Peter Hermann,Sun Staff Writer

A 43-year-old man was arrested on murder charges yesterday, nearly one year after he told police his wife committed suicide in the bedroom of the couple's Edgewood home, authorities said.

Members of the U.S. marshal's fugitive task force arrested Harry Phillip Gross 3rd at a house in the first block of S. Ellwood Ave. in Baltimore and charged him with first-degree murder and a handgun violation.

Mr. Gross was being held without bail in the Harford County Detention Center last night.

He could go before a District Court judge for a bail review tomorrow.

The Harford County sheriff's office was called to the couple's home in the 1200 block of Janet Drive about 1:20 a.m. March 7, RTC and found Clara Jean Gross, 35, bleeding from a gunshot wound to the chest.

She was flown by Maryland State Police MedEvac helicopter to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where she was pronounced dead an hour later.

Sgt. Edward Hopkins, who helped investigate the case, said Mr. Gross told officers that he and his wife had been arguing when she took a .38-caliber handgun and shot herself.

But Sergeant Hopkins said detectives "had suspicions from the get-go."

"From the beginning, the death appeared to be suspicious," he said. "We treated it as a homicide ever since she was shot."

Sergeant Hopkins said police did not have any witnesses or know the motive, and had to piece evidence together from a variety of sources.

He declined to be more specific.

"Things did not add up the way Mr. Gross said they did," the sergeant said.

Investigators said they still do not know why Mrs. Gross was shot.

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