SALEM, Ind. — A body found Monday at a southern Indiana horse park is believed to be the man suspected of killing three people at a rural home where they all were living, police said.
State Police Sgt. Jerry Goodin said investigators are nearly certain that 47-year-old Richard Lee Burton Jr. was found dead in a pickup truck at the Blackwell Horse Camp near Bloomington, Indiana. A coroner has not yet identified the body or determined how the man died.
Goodin said a woman who called Salem, Indiana, police from out of state Sunday evening had asked for a welfare check on the residents of a rural Washington County home about 30 miles (50 kilometers) northwest of Louisville, Kentucky, after speaking to Burton.
He said the woman “felt something had happened at the residence” based on Burton’s comment to her. Inside, police found the bodies of two males and a female. Their names and ages have not been released.
Goodin said Burton was a guest who had been staying at the house. He said it wasn’t clear what Burton’s relationship was to the three victims, who were last seen alive Saturday.
Authorities believe Burton committed the killings based on their ongoing investigation, and the fact that he was only person who lived at the home that they could not locate after the bodies were found. Goodin said police had been unable to contact Burton on his phone.
“So we’ve got a person who lived at the home, that we confirmed had been at the home and then (he) disappeared. That’s what led us obviously to him,” he said at a news conference in Sellersburg.
Police believe they know the motive in the killings, but he declined to discuss that yet.
The autopsies on the three victims and the man found dead Monday are scheduled for Tuesday.