Paul N. Hoff, JPSO

Paul N. Hoff, via JPSO

A 54-year-old man shot his younger roommate to death during a fight over rent money in Marrero on Sunday night, according to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office.

Paul N. Hoff was booked early Monday on one count of second-degree murder in the death of Roger McMorris, 39. He faces life imprisonment if convicted of murder.

According to Sheriff Joe Lopinto, McMorris and Hoff got into an argument about 7:30 p.m. over payment of the rent for the home they shared in the 2700 block of Hardwood Drive. A fight broke out, and Hoff shot McMorris at least three times, Lopinto said.

McMorris died at the scene from bullet wounds to his chest.

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Hoff remained at the scene, and deputies arrested him after speaking with him as well as one other person who was in the home at the time of the shooting, Lopinto said.

Lopinto declined to elaborate on the conversations his investigators had with Hoff and the other witness, whom Sheriff's Office spokesman Glen Boyd described as the victim's uncle.

McMorris' family has ties to Mississippi, and he lived in Iowa before moving to Marrero, according to a 2008 obituary written for his mother. His survivors include at least one brother. 

McMorris' landlord, David Rivas, said he believed his slain tenant worked offshore. He said he believed Hoff was on leave from a job with a tire company because of a recent knee operation, and he was under the impression Hoff got along with McMorris and McMorris' uncle, a third roommate at the home. 

He said the accusations against Hoff shocked him. 

"To me, he seemed like a nonviolent type — but you never know what someone is capable of, I guess," Rivas said.  

A 24th Judicial District Court bond commissioner set Hoff's bail at $500,000. He remained behind bars Monday afternoon.

Sunday's slaying occurred just around the corner from an unrelated murder-suicide that left four people dead at a home in the 4800 block of Brandi Street two years ago. Investigators said David Mata, 46, died of a drug overdose after he killed his 40-year-old wife, Kelli, and their sons, who were 2 and 4.

Follow Ramon Antonio Vargas on Twitter, @RVargasAdvocate.

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