Man killed in Elizabethtown identified, person in custody

Published: Jun. 9, 2012 at 7:09 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 31, 2015 at 5:09 AM EDT
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Velma State
Velma State

ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) - Several hours after a crime took place late Friday night, the caution tape was still up around the perimeter outside of apartment #18 on East Memorial Drive.

While police have one person in custody they continue investigate, the case is still an ongoing and active investigation.

Velma State, whose friends live near the victim, said she was surprised at the news, "Very surprising it really is because I just saw him three or four weeks ago because we had a BBQ together."

Shocked friends and neighbors are coping with the loss of 32-year-old Frank Knapp, of Radcliff, and they're not alone.

Friends said Knapp had a daughter, under the age of 10, who now must go on without her father after police said he was found shot to death at an apartment complex.

State said the area has a low violence rate, "You might hear that in Louisville, but you don't hear that down here! This is the country! You don't hear of violence down here like that!"

The scene just off of a busy US 31 caused quite a stir Friday night.

Arvil Bird's granddaughter lives in a home nearby, "She came home and there was police in the neighborhood and in her drive and they had guns."

Arvil said his granddaughter couldn't get into her home and had to stay with relatives, a scene no one will soon forget.

Bird spoke of her granddaughters reaction, "She's shocked; she's scared to death. She's ready to move. She's never heard anything like that before."

One of the residents of the apartment building is a registered nurse and came rushing to help as the scene unfolded just before 11 Friday night. She recalled how she tried to help Knapp until paramedics arrived, "I was just putting direct pressure on an artery that was bleeding out."

But Knapp wouldn't make it, dying from multiple gunshot wounds.

A short time after his death, police quickly named a suspect:  26-year-old Robert Tarafa.

Officers said they saw him running from the area and were able to catch up with him and take him in for questioning.

Detectives don't have a motive so far, but will continue to question Tarafa throughout the weekend, with more information expected Monday.

A check of the WAVE 3 archives showed this incident isn't the first time Tarafa has had a run in with the law. In October 2009 police said Tarafa went to a man's home where a fight broke out and Tarafa fatally stabbed the man.

It isn't clear why Knapp was at the apartment complex. Funeral services for Knapp are pending.

Copyright 2012 WAVE News. All rights reserved.