COLUMBUS, Ohio-- A body found in a shallow grave in northeast Ohio was that of a man missing more than a week who answered a deadly Craigslist ad that police say lured victims into a robbery, a medical examiner said Saturday.
Timothy Kern, 47, of Massillon, was last seen Nov. 13 after driving to Akron for a job he called a "good offer but strange." His family has said it was out of character for him not to be in touch.
Kern died of gunshot wounds to the head, the Summit County Medical Examiner's office said.
Kern answered the same ad for a farmhand that authorities say led to the shooting death of Norfolk, Va., resident David Pauley, 51, in a rural area 90 miles south of Akron. A South Carolina man reported answering the ad but managed to escape after being shot Nov. 6.
The discovery of Kern's body Friday near the Rolling Acres shopping mall in Akron came just a few hours before the sheriff in Noble County in southeastern Ohio announced that another body had been found in a shallow grave there.
Sheriff Steve Hannum is under a judge's gag order and can't comment on the case, but the title of his emailed announcement -- "second body" -- implied the discovery was connected with Pauley's death.
If the two bodies discovered Friday are both linked to Pauley's case, that would bring to three the number of deaths associated with the phony Craigslist ad.
Two people from the Akron area are in custody: a high school student who has been charged with attempted murder and 52-year-old Richard Beasley, who is in jail on unrelated charges.
Beasley's mother has previously told The Associated Press that her son has "a very caring heart" and she prays that reports he is a suspect are not true.
Agents have contacted individuals to check on their well-being, FBI spokesman Harry Trombitas said Friday in an email.
The farm advertised on Craigslist does not exist; the area where the bodies were found in Noble County is property owned by a coal company and often leased to hunters.