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Charges: Man 'snapped,' killed 4, then left bodies in western Wisconsin cornfield

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ST. PAUL, Minn. — An Arizona man who allegedly told his father he “snapped and shot a couple of people” was charged Tuesday with murder, about a week after four bodies were found in an abandoned SUV in western Wisconsin, according to a criminal complaint.

Antoine Suggs, 38, of Scottsdale, faces four counts of second-degree intentional murder, without premeditation. Suggs turned himself in last week to police in Gilbert, Arizona, after investigators announced he was wanted for questioning. Prosecutors said he remains jailed in Arizona, awaiting extradition to Minnesota.

Gabby Petito was killed by another person, a coroner concluded while also confirming that the human remains found recently at a Wyoming national park were those of the 22-year-old woman who disappeared months after she set out on a cross-country road trip with her boyfriend, the FBI said Tuesday.Teton County Coroner Brent Blue determined Petito was a homicide victim, but did not disclose a cause of death pending final autopsy results, officials said. Her body was found Sunday near an undeveloped camping area in remote northern Wyoming along the border of Grand Teton National Park.Meanwhile, authorities continue to search a swampy Florida preserve area near the home of Petito's boyfriend. Police in North Port, Florida, said Tuesday morning that investigators have returned to the Carlton Reserve to look for Brian Laundrie, 23.Investigators searched the 24,000-acre (9,700-hectare) Florida nature preserve over the weekend without success. They focused on the area after Laundrie's parents told police he may have gone there.Authorities are using helicopters, drones, dogs and officers in all-terrain vehicles in their search for Laundrie. About 75% of the search area is underwater.On Monday, the FBI went to Laundrie's parents' home in North Port and removed several boxes and towed away a car neighbors said Laundrie's mother typically used.Laundrie and Petito had been living with his parents at the North Port home before the road trip on which she died.SEE MORE: 22-Year-Old Never Returned From Road Trip With Her FiancThe young couple had set out in July in a converted van to visit national parks in the West. They got into a fight along the way, and Laundrie was alone when he returned in the van to his parents' home Sept. 1, police said.Laundrie has been named a person of interest in the case, but his whereabouts in recent days were unknown.Petito's father, Joseph, posted on social media an image of a broken heart above a picture of his daughter, with the message: "She touched the world."In an interview broadcast Monday on TV's "Dr. Phil" show, Joseph Petito said Laundrie and his daughter had dated for 2 1/2 years, and Laundrie was "always respectful." During the interview, which was recorded before his daughter's body was found, Petito said the couple had taken a previous road trip to California in her car and there were no problems.Joseph Petito said the family began worrying after several days without hearing from their daughter."We called Brian, we called the mom, we called the dad, we called the sister, we called every number that we could find," Joseph Petito said. "No phone calls were picked up, no text messages were returned."Joseph Petito said he wants Laundrie to be held accountable for whatever part he played in his daughter's disappearance, along with his family for protecting him."I hope they get what's coming, and that includes his folks," Joseph Petito said. "Because I'll tell you, right now, they are just as complicit, in my book."The FBI said investigators are seeking information from anyone who may have seen the couple around Grand Teton.Gabby Petito and Laundrie were childhood sweethearts who met while growing up on New York's Long Island. His parents later moved to North Port, about 35 miles (55 kilometers) south of Sarasota.A man who saw Petito and Laundrie fighting in Moab, Utah, on Aug. 12 called 911 to report a domestic violence incident, according to a recording of the call obtained from the Grand County Sheriff's Office. The man said he saw Laundrie slap Petito while walking through the town and proceeded to hit her before the two got in their van and drove off.Video released by the Moab police showed that an officer pulled the couple's van over on the same day after it was seen speeding and hitting a curb near Arches National Park. The body-camera footage showed an upset Petito.Laundrie said on the video that the couple had gotten into a scuffle after he climbed into the van with dirty feet. He said he did not want to pursue a domestic violence charge against Petito, who officers decided was the aggressor.Moab police separated the couple for the night, with Laundrie checking into a motel and Petito remaining with the van.In the footage, Gabby Petito cried as she told the officer she and Laundrie had been arguing over her excessive cleaning of the van. She told the officer she has OCD obsessive compulsive disorder.On "Dr. Phil," her father said that was not literally true. She just likes to keep her living area orderly and was using slang, he said.Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Suggs’ father, 56-year-old Darren McWright, who also goes by the last name Osborne, has been charged in Wisconsin with four counts of hiding a corpse. The Minnesota complaint against Suggs does not name McWright as Suggs’ father, but comparing the details with the charges out of Wisconsin shows the two men are father and son. The Ramsey County Attorney’s Office says it is reviewing the case against McWright.

The Gilbert Police Department said Suggs was taken to the Maricopa County jail on Friday. It was not immediately clear if he was still there because the jail’s online records showed an error. A message left with the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office was not immediately returned. The Ramsey County jail’s phone system has McWright listed as an inmate, but staff there do not take messages. It was not clear if either man had an attorney to comment on his behalf.

The bodies of Matthew Pettus, 26, his half-sister Jasmine Sturm, 30, and Sturm’s boyfriend, 35-year-old Loyace Foreman III, all of St. Paul; and 30-year-old Nitosha Flug-Presley, of Stillwater, Minnesota, a close friend of Sturm, were found by a farmer in a cornfield on Sept. 12 just outside of the town of Sheridan in Dunn County, Wisconsin, roughly 60 miles east of St. Paul.

Authorities said all four had gunshot wounds to the head. Nitosha Flug-Presley, who was in the front passenger seat, had been shot in the mouth, Pettus had two gunshot wounds to the back of his head, Foreman had a gunshot wound to the face and another gunshot wound to the top of the head, and Sturm had a gunshot wound to the left cheek, the complaint said.

Bar sighting

Authorities said in court documents that Suggs was seen at a St. Paul bar with Flug-Presley, Sturm and Pettus on Sept. 12. The Wisconsin criminal complaint against McWright said Flug-Presley’s aunt told authorities that her niece had a “thing” with Suggs and he would fly in from Arizona to see her.

According to the criminal complaint against Suggs, an employee at a bar saw a woman who looked like Flug-Presley arguing with a man, who the employee identified as Suggs from a photo lineup. The employee said Suggs said something about “having six children and this happening every time he comes back to Minnesota,” the complaint said.

Flug-Presley, Pettus and Sturm were then seen getting into a black SUV, the complaint said. The SUV and Suggs returned to the area shortly before 3 a.m. Investigators believe that Suggs killed the four victims in St. Paul, sometime between 3:30 a.m. and 3:48 a.m. Six spent shell casings and Suggs’ bloody driver’s license were found in the vehicle.

Call to father

Suggs then called his father and showed up where his father was staying at about 5 a.m. Suggs’ father told authorities that Suggs “snapped and shot a couple of people.” Suggs then drove the SUV from St. Paul to Wisconsin, and Suggs’ father followed him. They stopped at various gas stations — surveillance video from one St. Paul station shows Suggs driving the SUV, and Flug-Presley slumped over in the passenger seat, the complaint said.

Suggs’ father told authorities that after leaving the SUV in a cornfield, he gave Suggs a ride back to Minnesota. Suggs’ father denied knowing the bodies were in the abandoned SUV, the complaint said.

But surveillance video from a gas station in Wheeler, Wisconsin — about 10 miles from the cornfield — shows that Suggs’ father handed something to the driver of the SUV. Suggs’ father also stood at the SUV’s open passenger window while it was in the gas station parking lot, the complaint said.

Both vehicles then left the gas station in Wheeler and drove toward the direction of the cornfield where the SUV was discovered. Investigators found blood in the gas station parking lot where the SUV had stopped, the complaint said.


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