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Robbery ends in double murder

Two 18-year-old suspects arrested following unrelated incident in Floyd County

August 07, 2013
Two 18-year-old males are behind bars in Floyd County after allegedly murdering a Harrison County couple in what police say was a robbery that went wrong Saturday morning.


Chief Wayne Kessinger of the Harrison County Sheriff's Department said that at about 4 a.m., Kevin Schuler, of Greenville, and Austin Bryan Nelson Chancelor Scott, of New Albany, were riding a four-wheeler that was sputtering and running low on fuel. They stopped at a house on Nadorff Road to try and get some gasoline but decided the house was too close to the road and moved on to a home on the 9100 block of Walk Drive in Greenville.

Schuler and Scott (who may be using an alias of Chancelor) were unable to locate any fuel, so they allegedly entered the home of Asenath S Arnold, 57, and Gary L. Henderson, 70. The front door lock appeared to have been broken in, and the rear door was unlocked, so it's unclear as to which door the pair used to gain access, Kessinger said.

Police said one of the suspects lived nearby and knew the victims.

An employee of the victims' carriage ride business arrived Saturday morning and was preparing horses for pony rides. She noticed that neither victim had emerged from the home, so she went inside to investigate. That's when she found Arnold's body at about 11 a.m. and called police. Police went inside the house to do a sweep to make sure no one else was inside, and that's when Henderson's body was found upstairs.

The victims were in separate bedrooms in the home, with Arnold having been beaten to death by a wooden part of a horse harness called a single tree, and Henderson having received 23 stab wounds on the second floor. Stab wounds were also found on Arnold's body.

Police say the teens stole credit cards, guns and prescription pills from the home.

"It was a senseless, heinous, gruesome beating of a defenseless elderly couple," Kessinger said. "He was in his 70s and she used a walker to get around. It was just totally senseless. Two people are dead over a gallon of gas, a few guns and a little money."

Kessinger, who has investigated hundreds of homicides in a law enforcement career that has spanned several decades, said the murders Saturday ranked in the top three in terms of heinousness of the crime.

He also said that the case had all the earmarks of being an unsolved case — no witnesses, committed in a rural area — until there was a break later in the day.

Kessinger said that Schuler and Scott went to Scott's home in New Albany. For an unknown reason, Scott's brother struck Schuler in the left eye. Scott fired a gun in response, causing someone to call the New Albany Police Department to report an altercation and shots fired. Schuler and Scott fled the scene in a vehicle, but the person who reported the ruckus was able to report the type of vehicle.

Officers located the vehicle and questioned the occupants. Upon searching the vehicle, police located property that was linked to the murder scene in Harrison County.

"That was a huge break in the case and allowed us to tie it all together. I can't say enough about the outside help from the New Albany Police Department, the Floyd County Sheriff's Department and the Indiana State Police crime scene techs," Kessinger said. "I've worked with the belief that 80 percent of solving a case is the effectiveness of the investigation and knowledge and 20 percent is luck. In this case, luck played a little bigger role."

Scott and Schuler are currently being held at the Floyd County Jail.

Schuler is being held on two counts of Class D felony theft, Class D felony possession of controlled substance and Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license. Scott was charged with Class C felony criminal recklessness for discharging the handgun, Class D felony receiving stolen property and possession of controlled substance and Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license.

In Harrison County, murder and robbery charges are expected to be filed soon. All three murder weapons (the single tree and two knives) were located and collected as evidence and most of the property was recovered.

Schuler's criminal record in Floyd County includes a domestic battery charge in 2010 and five felony drug charges in one case this year. Schuler's drug case is still pending in Floyd Superior Court.

Scott's only criminal record in Floyd County is a charge of illegal consumption of alcoholic beverage by a minor. That case was decided last month.

The Harrison County Sheriff's Department was assisted by the New Albany Police Department, Floyd County Sheriff's Department, the Indiana State Police and the Harrison County Prosecutor's Office.

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