Body believed to be that of missing priest found in Burke County


Burke County, GA (WJBF) – There’s been a tragic end to the search for a Florida priest who’s been missing for more than a week.

St. Johns County (Florida) Sheriff David Shoar confirms that the body of Father Rene Robert has been found in Georgia. The site is reportedly a rural area in Burke County, off Highway 56.  Father Robert hadn’t been seen since April 10th.

Officers traced Robert’s car to Aiken, South Carolina last week where they arrested 28-year-old Steven James Murray, who was originally from Aiken County. Sheriff Shoar says, on Monday morning, Murray told detectives where to find the body. Father Robert had reportedly been helping Murray for a while in St. Johns County before he went missing.

A St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson has confirmed that Father Robert was dead before the manhunt that led to Murray’s arrest in Aiken County. The spokesperson adds that Murray lead investigators to the Father Robert’s body after stopping by several other locations.

The Aiken County Sheriff’s Office has taken out two warrants against Murray:

  • Receiving Stolen Goods over $10K
  • Possession of a Firearm by a Violent Convicted Felon

Murray was extradited from Aiken to Florida where he’s been in the St. Johns County Jail, but he had been temporarily transported back to Burke County to assist law enforcement in locating the body.

Count on WJBF News Channel 6 to continue to follow this case and provide the latest information as it becomes available. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories