Pregnant Amish Woman Found Dead Inside Her Home With ‘Scalping’ Wound

A Pennsylvania man was arrested on Saturday on suspicion of killing a pregnant Amish woman who was found dead inside her home last month with her throat slit and a “scalping” wound on her head.

Shawn C. Cranston, 52, of Corry, Pennsylvania was booked on charges of criminal homicide, criminal homicide of an unborn child, burglary and criminal trespass in connection to the murder of Rebekah Byler, according to charging documents obtained by HuffPost.

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According to Cranston’s probable cause document, state police responded to Byler’s home in Sparta Township on Feb. 26, after receiving a call reporting that Byler’s husband had found her unresponsive.

Police noted in the document that Byler was found in the living room laying on her back in a pool of blood. Police said Byler’s throat was cut and that she’d sustained a “scalping type wound on her head.”

Police also accused him of also shooting Byler in the head, according to Cranston’s criminal complaint.

No motive was mentioned in the documents and it’s unclear how police came to suspect Cranston.

Cranston’s former foster daughter, who is now in her 20s, told local news station WJET/WFXP she believes the murder was part of mistaken identity.

The daughter, who declined to be named, told reporter Jennifer Mobilia that an Amish couple who lived in Byler’s home a few years ago had adopted Cranston’s grandson.

“As far as I know, he just wanted his grandson back,” she told Mobilia.

She added, “I could never picture my dad being that cold-hearted monster.”

According to reports by local newspaper Meadville Tribune, Byler’s two young children were inside the home when she died, but they were uninjured.

Drusilla Moorhouse contributed reporting.

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