On Saturday, RTM reported that police in a small Oklahoma city with fewer than 12,000 residents found four bodies in the Deep Fork River.
Okmulgee Police Chief Joe Prentice noted on the department’s Facebook page that on Friday afternoon, a passerby reported suspicious items in the river near Sharp Road.
Prentice noted that in investigating the area, “Four male bodies were recovered from the river. No identifications have been made at the scene and the Medical Examiner will have to make the official identifications.”
On Tuesday, police disclosed that the four men recovered from the river had been shot and dismembered.
Their names are Mark Chastain, 32; his brother Billy Chastain, 30; Mike Sparks, 32; and Alex Stevens, 29.
The New York Post reported: “We believe the men planned to commit some kind of criminal act when they left the resident on West 6th Street,” Prentice told reporters.
“That belief is based on information supplied by a witness who reports they were invited to go with the men to ‘hit a lick’ big enough for all of them,” Prentice said, using slang for obtaining money illegally.
According to the Post, the men, who had been reported missing for almost a week, left on a bike ride on the evening of Oct. 9. The Post reports that “authorities believe they were on their way to commit a crime.”
At a press conference, Prentice thanked the local, state and federal agencies who assisted in the recovery and investigation.
News Channel 8 reported that all victims had gunshot wounds and that “investigators believe the bodies were dismembered before the men were dumped into the river.”
According to the Post, Okmulgee police are searching for a person of interest.
In the course of the investigation, the phone of one of the victims was located at a local salvage yard. In recovering the phone, police found evidence of a “violent event” on an “adjoining property.”
Joe Kennedy, the owner of the salvage yard, is considered a person of interest but no charges have as yet been filed.
Presently, the whereabouts of Kennedy is unknown.