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Police find body of ex-Marine suspected of killing six

Police search for suspect Bradley William Stone in Pennsburg, Pa.
Police search for suspect Bradley William Stone in Pennsburg, Pa. AP

A prosecutor has confirmed that a body found in woods in suburban Philadelphia is that of an ex-Marine suspected of killing his ex-wife and five of her relatives.

Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman posted on her official Facebook page that police found 35-year-old Bradley William Stone’s body Tuesday near his Pennsburg home.

A news conference is scheduled for 4 p.m.

The discovery came amid an intense manhunt a day after prosecutors say the Iraq war veteran went on a 90-minute rampage before daybreak Monday at three homes a few miles apart.

It was the second major manhunt to transfix Pennsylvania in recent months. Eric Frein spent 48 days at large in the Poconos after the September ambush slaying of a state trooper.

Monday’s rampage unfolded in the towns of Harleysville, Lansdale and Souderton.

Stone’s former wife, 33-year-old Nicole Stone, was found dead in her apartment after a neighbor saw Stone fleeing around 5 a.m. with their two young daughters, authorities said. The girls were later found safe with Stone’s neighbors.

Police discovered five more people dead in two other homes: Nicole Stone’s mother, grandmother, sister, brother-in-law and 14-year-old niece. A 17-year-old nephew was wounded in the head, and Ferman said he was in “very serious” condition.

Stone and his ex-wife had fighting over their children’s custody since she filed for divorce in 2009. He filed an emergency motion this month, although the resulting Dec. 9 ruling remained sealed in court files.

“She would tell anybody who would listen that he was going to kill her and that she was really afraid for her life,” said Evan Weron, a neighbor in Harleysville.

Ferman would not discuss the weapon or weapons used in the slayings.

“I’m (angry) because he could have come to my door and I could have taken him to a treatment center, and we could have worked this out,” said longtime friend Matthew Schafte.

Stone was in the Marines from 2002 through 2008. The former sergeant’s occupational specialty was listed as “artillery meteorological man.”

Schafte said he was not aware of any injuries Stone may have suffered as a Marine.

Stone had faced several driving-under-the-influence charges, one of which was handled in veterans’ court and led to a three- to 23-month sentence.

He remarried last year, according to his Facebook page and court records, and has an infant son. Neither his wife nor the son was injured. Nicole Stone became engaged over the summer, neighbors said.

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