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Police search for Winchester rifle missing from scene of Butler County homicide

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Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 12:42 p.m.

A man found dead in his Butler County auto body shop kept a Winchester rifle there, but the rifle is now missing and state police want to know where it is.

“We do not know if this rifle was the murder weapon. But we'd like to locate it. There's also concern about this kind of weapon just being out there,” Trooper Dan Kesten said of the Canadian Centennial Winchester .30-.30 rifle.

A friend found the body of Robert C. Gaurrich, 45, on Friday inside Bob's Truck and Auto Repair, along Evans City Road in Forward. Gaurrich died of a gunshot wound to the chest and the Butler County Coroner ruled Gaurrich's death a homicide.

Gaurrich, of Forward, worked alone inside the business.

State police remained at the auto body shop for more than 14 hours, searching for evidence and to determine whether anything was stolen. They were told about the missing rifle early in the investigation.

There was no evidence of forced entry at the business, Kesten said. He was not aware of previous problems at the shop.

Anyone with information about the weapon is asked to call state police at 724-284-8100.

Rick Wills is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7944 or at

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