The death of a Phelps County man on Wednesday, is now being investigated as a homicide. The victim has been identified as 57-year-old Eugene R. Morton, a Missouri S&T employee who had not been at work for several days.

According to a press release from the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department, deputies were dispatched to Morton’s residence on County Road 8430 for a well-being check and discovered his body. Phelps County investigators and Coroner Ernie Coverdell arrived on the scene and determined that Morton was the victim of a homicide, with a preliminary investigation indicating a gunshot wound to the head.

Authorities do not believe this was a random act of violence and have no reason to believe the public is in danger. The Phelps County Sheriff’s Department, Coroner’s office, Missouri State Highway Patrol, and Rolla Police Department are all involved in the investigation.

If you have any information regarding this incident, please contact the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department Criminal Investigations Unit at 573-426-3860 or leave a tip on their website at