Police: Fiance' wanted in death investigation jumped into river, drowned

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WINOOSKI, Vt. (WCAX) The man wanted in connection with the death of Winooski woman is believed to be dead himself. Police say they have surveillance video showing Keith Gaston throwing himself into the raging Winooski River last Friday.

"We have determined that he did not come out of that river. We do not have a body at this point. The next part of the investigation is attempting to recover his body from the river," said Winooski Police Chief Rick Hebert.

Police believe 32-year-old Keith Gaston could not have survived a jump into the flood-swollen Winooski River last Friday. Police considered Gaston a person of interest in the death of his 28-year-old fiance, Hannah Keyes. She was found dead in her Audette Street apartment last Saturday. Police were called to check on her when she didn't show up to work. Police talked today for the first time on camera about what they found.

"The interior door that led to the apartment was open," Chief Hebert said. Inside, he says police found Keyes' body. They say her 3 and 4 year-old children were sleeping on the couch.

Reporter Ike Bendavid: There is still no indication on how she died?
Police Chief Rick Hebert: No, not as of today.

Police say they are still awaiting autopsy results to determine the manner and cause of death.

It wasn't until Thursday, five days after Keyes' body was found, that police named her fiance', Keith Gaston, as a person of interest. They said they had not been able to make contact with him and he had not used his phone or credit cards. But they had found his car parked on West Canal Street, about a mile away from Keyes' apartment.

"We had decided that he had, may have been relatively close in proximity of the time that she may have passed," Chief Hebert said. That's when police turned to surveillance video cameras in the downtown. "We were able to follow his path from the vehicle, across the traffic circle and onto the riverwalk."

Chief Hebert said. After seeing his apparent suicide, police were not ready to conclude that Gaston killed the mother of his children until they get Keyes' cause of death. But they are not looking for other suspects. "It's a sad, a really sad incident. Realistically, we believe that the two people involved in this incident are now deceased," he said.

Crews on Thursday searched a section of the river off West Canal Street and found nothing. Police say they've been advised by Colchester Technical Rescue officials that due to the elevated strength and depth of the water on Friday, Gaston could not have survived. They say further efforts to locate his body will take place in the near future.