Details emerge of how police charged Fox Chapel man with 2nd homicide in 3 months (2024)

Lured to his friend’s house to play video games and smoke marijuana, Christian Moore-Rouse didn’t even make it up the long driveway leading to Adam Rosenberg’s place in Fox Chapel.

Instead, he was shot in the back of his head and dragged into a ditch, lifeless — and left to nature’s duty of decomposition.

According to a criminal complaint filed against Rosenberg, that was the last day anyone had seen Moore-Rouse alive — Dec. 21. His body wouldn’t be discovered until March 3. Police found him in a wooded area near the Settlers Ridge Road home where Rosenberg lived with his parents. Moore-Rouse was lying face upward, half-dressed in the same outfit he had put on that fateful day in December.

“The remains were in a state of near-total decomposition,” said a detective in a criminal complaint filed against Rosenberg, 22, on May 12.

The details found in that affidavit show a grim culmination of a monthslong investigation of the whereabouts of Moore-Rouse, a 22-year-old from Verona.

Rosenberg was charged Tuesday with criminal homicide, robbery, abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and firearms violations. He is being held in Allegheny County Jail without bail on separate murder charges.

Rosenberg also faces charges in connection to the Feb. 15 homicide of Jeremy Dentel, 28, whose body was found inside his Baldwin home. Rosenberg was charged with Dentel’s death on Feb. 19, the same day an unidentified witness, referred to as Witness #3, tipped police about a possible body being in the woods near Rosenberg’s house.

“Witness #3 heard Rosenberg make numerous comments about ‘catching a body’ and referenced killing someone and putting their body in the woods by (Rosenberg’s) house,” the complaint said.

The witness could not remember if that person was Moore-Rouse, but seemed to remember it had been someone who had “ripped off” Rosenberg in the past.

Later, on May 7, detectives interviewed Witness #3 again. During the interview, the witness told police a person named Christian had set Rosenberg up to be robbed.

“Rosenberg indicated that he was going to do ‘something’ to Christian for setting him up, but then told Witness #3 he was ‘just kidding,’ ” the complaint said, adding that Witness #3 seemed to remember Moore-Rouse and Rosenberg planned to meet in person.

Rosenberg told Witness #3 the two planned to play video games and smoke pot at his parents’ house in Fox Chapel. He also ordered him an Uber ride. He then waited for Moore-Rouse and shot him in the back of the head shortly after an Uber driver dropped him off.

“Rosenberg told Witness #3 that he took Christian’s cellphone and backpack. Witness #3 stated what when Rosenberg told him/her this, he/she did not believe him,” the complaint said, adding that Rosenberg had also told Witness #3 “a number of times” he wanted to kill his parents.

The witness did not know what gun was used to kill Moore-Rouse, but assumed it was a baby-blue Ruger 9mm that Moore-Rouse had carried with him. Police had found an instruction manual for the handgun in Moore-Rouse’s bedroom, but the gun itself was not recovered. Instead, an empty shell casing belonging to a 9mm handgun was found 16 feet away from his body, dumped in the wooded lot.

A stolen handgun was found in North Park by a woman who was walking her dog on Jan. 20. It was a Ruger SR9C, one of the models covered in Moore-Rouse’s manual that police found in his bedroom.

Another unidentified witness, referred to as Witness #1, told police Moore-Rouse used to carry a Ruger handgun. When police showed the witness a photograph of the stolen handgun found in North Park, the witness told police it was the same type of gun that Moore-Rouse carried.

Police were first notified of Moore-Rouse’s disappearance on Dec. 25, when his stepfather, Lloyd Oliver, filed a missing person’s report with the Verona Police Department, according to the criminal complaint.

The criminal complaint said Oliver and Moore-Rouse lived together in a house on Spruce Street in Verona. He told police the last time he saw Moore-Rouse was Dec. 21, when he had picked him up around 4:30 p.m. after his shift at Dollar Tree, where Moore-Rouse worked.

“Oliver told detectives that he dropped Christian off at their residence and ran errands for several hours,” the criminal complaint said.

After a few days of not hearing from Moore-Rouse — which was unusual — his mother, Thenia Rouse, who also goes by Lee Reed and Lee Rouse, began to get worried. She urged Oliver to file the missing person’s report with the Verona police. She then began doing some investigating and found he had not accessed his paycheck from the Dollar Tree or made any other deposits or withdrawals on his banking account.

Verona police Chief Ron McLemore requested the assistance of Allegheny County Police on Jan. 6, about the time when the Moore-Rouse family said they had notified police about Adam Rosenberg as a possible suspect.

Allegheny County police, however, dispute that. They said the family only provided investigators with the name “Adam” and were told the two were merely acquaintances.

The two became acquainted through college, when they both attended Community College of Allegheny County, according to a post published on Moore-Rouse’s Facebook page on April 22. Moore-Rouse, who graduated from Pittsburgh Allderdice High School in 2016, majored in general studies at CCAC, said Elizabeth Johnston, a spokeswoman for the college.

Rosenberg, who graduated from Fox Chapel Area High School in 2016, enrolled at CCAC as a music major. He did not graduate, having last taking credit courses in the summer of 2017.

Casey White, an attorney representing Rosenberg, said they have not had a chance to sit down and speak with Rosenberg since charges were filed against him May 12 because of strict covid-19 restrictions in place at Allegheny County Jail.

White also said Rosenberg has a strong relationship with his parents, but did not say whether he knew if Rosenberg had threatened to kill his parents, as unidentified witnesses told investigators.

“The Rosenberg family, as a whole, is very close-knit,” White said.

Moore-Rouse’s family contends Allegheny County Police did not act fast enough when provided with “critical information” that pointed to Rosenberg.

“We are all left to wonder if Christian had been a White young man and the Suspect a Black young man would the police still be dragging their feet on charging someone?” reads an April 22 Facebook post written by Quinton Kimes and shared on Moore-Rouse’s profile.

When questioned why it took police months to charge Rosenberg in connection with Moore-Rouse’s homicide, Allegheny County Police spokesman Michael Peairs said warrants for homicides “must meet approval of the district attorney’s office and must meet standards that they set. We were unable to meet those standards until now.”

Peairs said police needed “laboratory examination of evidence, search warrants and additional witness interviews” before filing charges.

Lee Rouse, Moore-Rouse’s mother, said she is glad charges eventually came.

“We’re sad that it took this long for Adam Rosenberg to be charged. But I’m happy that police did finally charge him,” she said.

She declined to comment any further about the case.

Randall McKinney, who is representing the Rouse family, was not immediately available to comment.

Categories: Fox Chapel Herald | Local | Penn Hills Progress | Allegheny | Top Stories

Details emerge of how police charged Fox Chapel man with 2nd homicide in 3 months (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Fr. Dewey Fisher

Last Updated:

Views: 6261

Rating: 4.1 / 5 (62 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Fr. Dewey Fisher

Birthday: 1993-03-26

Address: 917 Hyun Views, Rogahnmouth, KY 91013-8827

Phone: +5938540192553

Job: Administration Developer

Hobby: Embroidery, Horseback riding, Juggling, Urban exploration, Skiing, Cycling, Handball

Introduction: My name is Fr. Dewey Fisher, I am a powerful, open, faithful, combative, spotless, faithful, fair person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.