Half brothers have been arrested after an unidentified body was found in a shallow grave behind a residence near Rudy on Arkansas 348.
Nicholas Barrows, 19, and Jonathan Bridgewater, 27, both of Rudy, are being held in the Crawford County Detention Center on suspicion of first-degree murder.
Crawford County Circuit Court Judge Gary R. Cottrell set bonds of $250,000 for Barrows and Bridgewater after Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Scott Houston told the judge the two planned the murder, dug a shallow grave ahead of time and lured the victim to the location to kill him.
Houston said the two believed the victim raped Barrows’ girlfriend.
The prosecutor said the sheriff’s department received a call Sunday from a woman who said Bridgewater last week had taken her into the woods behind his residence in the 4600 block of Arkansas 348 to show her a body under blue tarp.
Houston said the woman told deputies she had heard a gunshot, followed by screams, then another gunshot. She also saw Barrows come out of the woods with a shotgun and limping, he said.
The woman also told deputies Bridgewater said he had taken the victim’s tennis shoes and was wearing them, an arrest report states.
Sheriff Ron Brown said the body has been sent to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory for autopsy.
The body was estimated to have been buried for about a week, Brown said.
Houston said the body was buried just eight to 10 inches in the ground about 60 yards behind the Bridgewater’s home. The body was found with a cadaver dog, Brown said.
Three pipe bombs were found in one of two homes on the property. Brown said other weapons were also found in the home.
Barrows and Bridgewater were arrested near the Rudy Store after their vehicle ran out of gas, according to the arrest report.
Bridgewater served prison time for drug and theft charges out of Crawford and Sebastian counties and was released July 2011, according to the Arkansas Department of Correction.