Family of missing Rosepine man speaks out - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

Family of missing Rosepine man speaks out

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VERNON PARISH, La. (KALB News Channel 5) - A third person has been arrested in connection the disappearance and death of 31 year old James Stephens. 

Stephens has been missing since March 29th, and last Thursday, Vernon Sheriff's Deputies arrested 22 year old Cassandra Ward and 24 year old Jose Ayala. Both are being charged with second degree murder. 28 year old Matthew Andrews of New Llano was also arrested, and charged with accessory after the fact to second degree murder. 

"When they pulled in the driveway, I knew what they were there for," James' father Richard Stephens held back tears as he recalled the moment VPSO told him they found the remains of his son. 

"In the middle of last week, we finally started getting a couple of good leads which did materialize, it led us to the recovery of the remains of what we are quite certain is James Stephens," said VPSO Sheriff Sam Craft. 

Perhaps the toughest thing for the family, is to know their beloved "Jamey" knew all three of the suspects. 
"The girl was James girlfriend’s daughter and I knew they didn’t get along with each other, but never expected something like this. so far everyone who was involved, he knew them," said Richard. 

The family says knowing suspects are in custody gives them some closure, but it doesn't change the fact that Jamey, a father of two, is gone.

Jamey's Aunt Teresa Mcconathy said, "After he went missing, my heart broke for his parents and his girls. To know that Jamey had been brought home but not the way we wanted".

"We’ll get through it, we won’t ever forget, but we’ll get through it," said Richard. 

The Stephens family is now waiting for justice to be served. 

"The investigation is ongoing, but we are confident that we have the persons responsible charged and in custody at this time," said Sheriff Craft. 

"It makes you wonder about people it really does.. I hope the ones that have done this, get what’s coming for them," said Richard. 

Sheriff Craft says a motive is unknown at this time. The remains have been sent to the LSU Faces Lab. VPSO tells KALB it could take two to three months before they get a positive I.D. 

In the meantime the family is selling t-shirts for Jamey, all proceeds will go towards funeral costs. 

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