published Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

Wife of Alabama preacher found dead in home in suburban Birmingham

HOMEWOOD, Ala. — The wife of an Alabama minister was found dead in her home in suburban Birmingham in an apparent homicide, authorities said today.

Karen Louise Shahan, 52, was found dead on a couch of her home in Homewood on Tuesday.

Al.com reported that the woman was the wife of the Rev. Richard Shahan, a pastor at First Baptist Church of Birmingham.

Authorities said the minister was out of town visiting family when his wife’s body was found. Police went to the home after co-workers at a retail store called to say Karen Shahan had failed to show up for work.

Authorities did not immediately release a cause of death, but police said was apparent someone killed her. The house was in disarray.

“We don’t know if this is random, a burglary gone bad or what,” said Sgt. Andrew Didcoct, a spokesman for the Homewood Police Department. “We just don’t know.”

The house where the body was found is owned by First Baptist of Birmingham. Shahan is the pastor to children and families at the church and also serves as facilities director.

Church officials had no immediate comment.

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