Police discover 7 bodies at the home of a sex offender on his scheduled court date
Updated May 2, 2023 at 12:38 PM ET
Authorities in Oklahoma discovered seven bodies on a rural property while searching for two missing teenagers on Monday.
The Okmulgee County Sheriff's office was unable to immediately confirm the identity of the victims, but said authorities are no longer searching for the two girls or the man they believed they were with.
"We've had our share of troubles and woes, but this one's pretty bad," said Sheriff Eddy Rice.
Here's what we know so far.
Why were authorities searching for the two teens?
The sheriff's office first issued an alert on Monday morning, saying it was searching for 14-year-old Ivy Webster.
"She went with a friend on Saturday to the McAlester area and was supposed to return home by 5:00 p.m. last night," the alert read.
State authorities then issued a wider EMA, or Endangered Missing Advisory, for Webster and 16-year-old Brittany Brewer. They also added Jesse L. McFadden, age 39.
The alert said the teens were last seen Monday at 1:22 p.m. in Henryetta, and advised that "both are possibly traveling in a white Chevy Avalanche with Jesse McFadden."
What do we know about the victims?
Police executed a search warrant on McFadden's property around 3 p.m. on Monday, where they discovered the seven bodies.
In a brief press conference, the sheriff declined to answer questions about the precise location of the bodies, details about weapons or the manner of death.
Rice said police were waiting for a medical examiner's report to identify any of the victims, but said, "we believe that we have found the persons" and that police were "no longer looking" for Webster, Brewer and McFadden. State authorities canceled the EMA on Monday.
Brittany's father, Nathan Brewer, confirmed to local media outlet News on 6 that his daughter was among the victims.
"Brittany was an outgoing person," Brewer said in a televised interview late Monday. "She was actually selected to be Ms. Henryetta coming up in July in the national Ms. pageant in Tulsa and now she ain't going to make it because she's dead. She's gone."
On Tuesday, a Westville, Okla., resident, Janette Mayo, confirmed to the Associated Press that her daughter, Holly Guess, 35, was among the victims. State records show Guess and McFadden applied for a marriage license in 2022.
Mayo's grandchildren — Rylee Elizabeth Allen, 17, Michael James Mayo, 15 and Tiffany Dore Guess, 13 — were also found dead on site, she said.
The Henryetta Public School system issued a statement late Monday saying that "several" students were among the victims.
"Our hearts are hurting, and we have considered what would be best for our students in the coming days," the school wrote in a letter to parents, adding that classes would continue, but upcoming graduation ceremonies scheduled for the week were postponed. Grief counselors would also be made available to students throughout the week.
What do we know about Jesse McFadden?
The man last seen with the two teens was convicted of first-degree rape in 2003 and served 17 years, according to records from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections.
He was scheduled to appear in a Muskogee County court on Monday for a jury trial on charges of soliciting a minor and possession of child pornography in 2017, while records show he was still in prison.
Nathan Brewer told local news outlets that he knew his daughter had planned to spend time with McFadden, but was unaware he was a convicted sex offender. He added that his daughter had spent past weekends with the family without issues.
How is the community reacting?
Henryetta, located about 60 miles south of Tulsa, is a rural community of about 6,000 residents known for its annual rodeos and history as a manufacturing hub.
On Monday evening, several hundred residents gathered at the local high school for an hour-long prayer vigil, reported Public Radio Tulsa's Elizabeth Caldwell. They aired their grief with hugs, tears and calls for faith.
"It is a tragedy with one individual, but it is catastrophic when you have seven individuals," Pastor Ryan Wells said, according to Public Radio Tulsa. "I think everything is so raw at the moment. We're still gathering information. There's a lot to be uncovered, lots of details we don't know."
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