Massachusetts man indicted on murder charges after women's bodies found at home

A Massachusetts man suspected of killing three women whose remains were found at his Springfield home was indicted on multiple charges by a grand jury Thursday -- including first-degree murder, aggravated rape, and aggravated kidnapping.

The 52-count indictment against Stewart Weldon, 41, included three counts of first-degree murder, nine counts of aggravated rape, eight counts of strangulation, two counts of rape, five counts of aggravated kidnapping, four counts of kidnapping and two counts of assault with intent to rape.

According to the Boston Herald, Weldon was arrested on May 27 by Springfield police after he was pulled over for a broken taillight. A woman in the vehicle told police that Weldon had held her captive for the previous month, repeatedly raping and beating her.

"Thank you guys for saving my life," the woman reportedly told police as she was taken to an ambulance. "I didn't ever think I was going to get away."

Police said the woman suffered "grotesque and violent" injuries, including a possible fractured jaw, stab wounds to her abdomen, marks from being hit with a blunt object and a leg infection.

When police went to Weldon's home, they found the bodies of three women "in and around" the property, according to Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni. They have since been identified as 47-year-old Ernestine Ryans and 34-year-old America Lyden, both of Springfield; and 27-year-old Kayla Escalante of Ludlow, Mass.

In addition to the three women, the indictment covers alleged crimes committed by Weldon against eight other people. At the time of his arrest, Weldon was wanted on a warrant for assault and battery of a police officer and numerous traffic violations.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Click for more from the Boston Herald.