Abilene PD Continues to Investigate Brother-in-Law as Suspect in Realtor Murder


ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Detectives are continuing to investigate the brother-in-law and sister of an Abilene realtor in connection to his murder. 

The Abilene Police Department has confirmed Luke Sweetser, 45, is a suspect in the murder of his brother-in-law, real estate agent Tom Niblo, 54. Police also told KTAB and KRBC Sweetser is not the only suspect at this time.

Niblo was shot and killed while in bed at his home on the 3700 block of Woodridge Drive on December 12, 2016. Preliminary autopsy results reveal he was shot eight times, and court documents state there was no sign of forced entry at the crime scene.

Investigators have been serving search warrants in connection to Niblo’s murder all month, and several of those search warrants involve Luke Sweetser and his wife, Ellousie Niblo Sweetser. 

KTAB and KRBC observed members of the Abilene Police Department taking several items from the Sweetser residence on January 12, 2017.

Court documents obtained Tuesday show the items taken from that residence include four cell phones and a laptop. 

Police have now filed a search warrant to gain access to information stored on those devices because they believe those devices could contain evidence related to Niblo’s murder. 

A warrant has also been filed to search as storage unit Ellouise Sweetser began renting in January of 2017.

Detectives believe this unit could contain hand-written journals belonging to Luke Sweetser. Court documents say Sweetser recorded his thoughts, feelings, ideas, and more in several of these journals.

Some journals have already been seized by investigators. Documents say the last entry in one journal was dated December 6, 2016, and mentioned the murder victim. 

Police are searching the N. 1st Street storage unit for the missing journals and any other evidence that could be related to Niblo’s murder, including the murder weapon, electronic devices, and shoes with identifying tread patterns. 

The Sweetsers financial records have been subpoenaed so detectives can investigate “numerous” large-sum monetary transactions made from several accounts maintained by Luke and Ellousie. Police believe important financial papers related to these transactions are also in storage on N. 1st Street. 

Additional documents claim detectives believe the Sweetsers could be involved in the murder because before Niblo was killed, he was in an ongoing dispute with Luke and Ellousie regarding his late father’s will. 

The Sweetsers were upset because Tom and his mother were made executors of the father’s will, but Ellouise was excluded, according the the documents.

The documents say the Sweetsers were “very upset” about this will and, “had made failed requests and attempts at changing the status of the executorship which led to verbal disputes between themselves and the deceased.”

Sweetser is not the only person police have investigated in connection to Niblo’s murder. They also requested phone records from a man who was previously in a relationship with one of Niblo’s daughters because he was upset about the relationship ending and was in contact with Niblo days before the murder.

No arrests have been made in the Niblo homicide case. Stick with BigCountryHomepage for the latest information on this developing story. 

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