Jury seated; testimony underway in Warrick Co. murder trial

Local

WARRICK COUNTY, Ind. (WEHT) — A Warrick County jury has been seated in the murder trial of Anthony Wolfe Junior.  Opening arguments and testimony began Wednesday morning.

Wolfe is accused of shooting Valarie Ruark, burning her body, then dumping the body along a road near Elberfeld.

In court on Wednesday, the state called three witnesses, including the man who discovered Ruark’s body. Stanley Stocker took the stand and told jurors he was hunting on April 26, 2019. He said he was in the Elberfeld stripper pits when he found a body. He testified the body was badly burned.

Another witness, Warrick County Deputy Coroner Brian Claspell testified that when he arrived on the scene, he found the body of a what appeared to be a female badly burned. 

Police say Wolfe killed Ruark because he thought she was a police informant. 

Brian Baumgartner is accused of helping Wolfe kill Ruark. Baumgartner is scheduled to go to trial in November.

If convicted of murder, both men could face up to 65 years in prison. 

The trial is scheduled to resume at 8 a.m. Thursday.

(This story was originally published May 12, 2021)

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