On Monday, an autopsy revealed that the headless and handless murder victim discovered last week inside a metal barrel in northwest Pennsylvania was killed by a single arrow to the heart.
While police–obviously lacking the usual body parts used to positively ID someone—are awaiting DNA tests to confirm the body’s identity, they believe it’s Gerald Paul Van Dyke, 55, who went missing on Sept. 14. Van Dyke was last seen leaving the home he shared with his longtime girlfriend, Tina Skelton, who reportedly was looking to end their relationship.
Van Dyke’s presumed body was found less than a mile from the home of Skelton’s father, Richard Alfred Houy. Skelton told police that Houy confessed to killing and dismembering Van Dyke after she confided to him that she was looking for a way out of her 10-year relationship with Van Dyke. Houy reportedly confessed to police after he was arrested, and he's currently being held without bail on charges of criminal homicide.
Van Dyke's aunt, Theresa Van Dyke, told NBC 12 that her nephew was a "good guy" and said she was shocked by the manner of his death.
"Who would ever remove parts of the body?" Van Dyke said. "It is one thing to get angry and kill someone. but to dismember him, that is about a low as you can get."
[Photo of Houy via NBC News]