2 juveniles accused of murder after Centerville shooting

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Two juveniles are facing preliminary charges of murder after a Centerville man was shot to death.

The arrests were announced Saturday, Dec. 19, after Indiana State Police led an investigation into the Tuesday, Dec. 15, death of 51-year-old James J. Burkhart.

One arrest was made in Ohio after a suspect led members of the Ohio State Highway Patrol in a pursuit resulting in the suspect crashing before being apprehended, according to Sgt. Coley McCutcheon, ISP’s new public information officer for Wayne and surrounding counties.

As of Saturday, that suspect was lodged in a juvenile detention facility in Franklin County, Ohio, and faces charges of murder and vehicle theft.

The other arrest was made in Indiana, with the second suspect being lodged at Wayne County Jail on a murder charge.

Because both suspects are juveniles, ISP will not release further information about their identities without permission from Wayne County Prosecutor Mike Shipman.

The investigation began at approximately 9:30 p.m. Dec. 15, when officers from Centerville Police Department and Wayne County Sheriff’s Department responded to the 100 block of South First Street in Centerville. There, they found Burkhart deceased.

Earlier story“>Read our initial story here.

ISP was called to assist with, and ultimately assumed the investigation at the request of Centerville Police Chief Ed Buchholz.

ISP Wayne County Coroner’s Office conducted an autopsy of Burkhart.

McCutcheon said the investigation is ongoing and thanked Centerville Police Department, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office and Ohio State Highway Patrol for their assistance.

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