Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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July 15, 2014

2 sentenced in Martinsburg casket tampering case

MARTINSBURG — Two men have been sentenced on charges of tampering with caskets at a Martinsburg cemetery.

Media outlets report that 25-year-old David P. Bowers III of Hedgesville and 30-year-old Richard R. Ruffner of Martinsburg each were sentenced on Monday to 26 years in prison.

Berkeley County Circuit Court Judge Gray Silver III also ordered Bowers and Ruffner to serve five years’ probation after they complete their prison sentences.

Bowers and Ruffner had each pleaded guilty in April to 23 counts of disinterment of a body and one conspiracy count.

Police have said more than 20 caskets were pried open during break-ins at two mausoleums at Rosedale Cemetery in 2013.

Co-defendant Erick Wayne Arthur of Bunker Hill faces the same charges. His case is pending.

 

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