MCCONNELSVILLE, Ohio (AP) — Bail has been set at $1 million for a man charged with aggravated murder in the shooting deaths of a couple found dead at a campsite in southeastern Ohio.
Brian Jason Weimert, 43, of Sidney made his initial court appearance Wednesday. It’s not known if he’s retained an attorney.
Weimert is accused of killing Steven Sturgill Jr., 36, and his 39-year-old girlfriend, Chrystal Burchett. Relatives had reported the Circleville residents as missing after they were unable to contact them for about three weeks.
The Morgan County sheriff’s office was asked Monday afternoon to help the Ohio Department of Natural Resources check on the couple, who were camping at the Equine Area of the Appalachian Hills Wildlife area, formerly known as AEP Recreation Lands. The wildlife area is a heavily forested 35,396-acre property that extends across the three southeastern Ohio counties of Morgan, Muskingum, and Noble.
The missing couple’s trailer and vehicle were found and the woods around the equine area were searched into the early morning hours Tuesday. The sheriff’s office said the couple’s bodies were found in two different locations.
Authorities have not disclosed a possible motive for the slayings or said if Weimert knew either victim.
They declined further comment on the slayings, citing the ongoing investigation.