Five years after 11-year-old Celina Cass disappeared from her home in New Hampshire and was found dead days later, authorities have finally arrested the man they believe is linked to the crime—a man who also happens to be the victim’s stepfather.

The New Hampshire General Attorney’s office announced earlier this week that Wendell Noyes, 52, was charged with second-degree murder and is currently being held in a county jail.


As NBC noted, Noyes has long been a suspect in the disappearance of his stepdaughter, which occurred on July 26, 2011. Cass’ body was found six days later in the Connecticut River, less than a mile away from her hometown of Stewartson.

Noyes, who separated from Cass’ mother months after the murder, exhibited odd behavior after his stepdaughter’s abduction and subsequent death—which included crawling in front of cameras on the front porch of his former home after pretending to throw an imaginary grenade—after being questioned in front of the press by a local detective.


NBC also reported that the suspect had a long history of “psychiatric issues,” and was pronounced unfit to stand trial in 2003 after he was apprehended for breaking into the home of a former girlfriend and threatening her.

Noyes was arraigned this afternoon via video stream in Berlin’s circuit court, and did not enter a plea.


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Image via AP.