Suspect charged in death of missing family in Mississippi

Nov. 6, 2013 at 7:20 PM
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GALLMAN, Miss., Nov. 6 (UPI) -- A suspect in the deaths of a 7-year-old boy, his mother and his stepfather was charged with murder Wednesday in Mississippi, police said.

Timothy Burns, 42, was charged with arson and two counts of murder in the deaths of Jaidon Hill and his mother, Atira Hill, whose bodies were found Tuesday in a wooded area, along with the body of Jaidon's stepfather, Laterry Smith.

Copiah County Sheriff Harold Jones said Burns -- who had led investigators to the bodies -- was not immediately charged with killing Smith because investigators were not sure which county Smith was killed in, CNN reported.

The victims were last seen alive Friday in a car that was later found overturned and burning.

Jones said investigators think Burns was driving the car and became involved in a crash before setting it on fire, and they do not think he knew the victims.

"We don't think there is [a relationship]," Jones said. "But we haven't tied that loose end up yet."

Burns wore protective body armor when he was taken to court for a hearing Wednesday.

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