Sabine Sheriff: Body found by Barthelemy's father-in-law - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

Sabine Sheriff: Body found by Barthelemy's father-in-law

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© Arrested: Robert Barthelemy, 34 (Source: DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Office) © Arrested: Robert Barthelemy, 34 (Source: DeSoto Parish Sheriff's Office)
© Crime scene investigators were on the scene late Sunday night after the discovery of a body believed to be Tony Procell's in Winn Parish. © Crime scene investigators were on the scene late Sunday night after the discovery of a body believed to be Tony Procell's in Winn Parish.
© KSLA - Tony Procell, 25 (Source: Jonothon Mitchell) © KSLA - Tony Procell, 25 (Source: Jonothon Mitchell)

WINN PARISH, LA (KSLA) -It was the father in law of the suspect in the kidnapping of Tony Procell that led authorities to a body Sunday afternoon that is believed to be Procell's.

According to Sabine Parish Sheriff Ronny Richardson, a shovel caked with "fairly fresh river mud" is what first alerted Robert Barthelemy's father in law that something was out of place on the property in Winn Parish just off of Sand Point Road in the Kisatchie National Forest.

It was an area that Barthelemy and his father in law had used for duck hunting in the past. 

Nearby, a pair of familiar sunglasses was also found. Richardson says they "closely resemble the ones we've seen on TV of that the victim had been wearing."

At that point, Barthelemy's father in law called authorities. Within a couple of hours, a Red River Parish cadaver dog had alerted on a shallow grave and the body itself was found.

A crime scene unit was called in from Caddo Parish, and the body has been sent to the Caddo Parish Coroner's Office for an autopsy. Authorities say they are awaiting the results of that autopsy to confirm the identity and cause of death.

Meanwhile, Sheriff Richardson says a warrant was being typed up Monday morning, charging Barthelemy with first degree murder. The Natchtitoches police officer has been in custody since early Wednesdsay morning, after he was taken into custody following a high speed chase and standoff that ended in DeSoto Parish.

He is currently in the Sabine Parish Detention Center, already charged with aggravated kidnapping and home invasion.

The Sabine Parish Sheriff's Office will assume jurisdiction in this case, even though the body was found on national park property in Winn Parish. "We did have a jurisdiction question since it was on federal property, but it was decided to let Sabine Parish handle it since it originiated with us."

After that, the case will be in the hands of Sabine Parish DA Don Burkett. 

Procell, 25, had been missing since Tuesday, after he is believed to have been kidnapped at gunpoint by 34-year-old Barthelemy, a Natchitoches police officer.

The discovery of the body came on the same day Procell's family confirmed that they had asked the non-profit search and rescue organization Texas EquuSearch to assist. They were set to meet with sheriff's officials on Monday morning.

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