SPRINGFIELD -- A Massachusetts man was indicted Thursday on 52 counts after three bodies were found inside his home earlier this year.
The Hampden County Grand Jury indicted Stewart Weldon on 52 counts including:
- Three counts of murder
- Eight counts of strangulation
- Nine counts of aggravated rape
- Two counts of rape
- Five counts of aggravated kidnapping
- Four counts of kidnapping
- Two counts of assault to rape
The charges stem from a traffic stop on May 27, 2018, by Springfield Police Department who said they encountered a woman who claimed that she was being beaten and held captive by Weldon.
On May 30, police said they responded to 1333 Page Boulevard and conducted a search of the property. During the search of the residence, authorities discovered the remains of three women in and around the Page Boulevard home.
The bodies were identified by Hampden District Attorney as Ernestine Ryans, 47, and America Lyden, 34, both of Springfield, and Kayla Escalante, 27, of Ludlow, a neighboring town.
Hampden District Attorney Anthony D. Gulluni released the following statement:
“I thank the Springfield Police Department’s Homicide Unit and my Office’s Murder Unit, specifically Assistant District Attorney Max Bennett. They managed a very complicated crime scene and early investigation very effectively and collected and organized a tremendous amount of evidence, which was presented to the Grand Jury to secure these indictments. With these fifty-two indictments in hand, we will now begin a vigorous prosecution with an eye towards justice for the victims and their families.”