Five people are facing charges in connection with the "untimely" death of a 40-year-old man, whose body was found earlier this week in a wooded area in Newport, New Hampshire, according to authorities.
After a missing person investigation was launched to find Mark Hudson, Newport police said on Wednesday that his body was found off of Paradise Road. The cause of his death was to be determined by the New Hampshire Medical Examiner's Office.
A day later, Newport police said that arrest warrants had been issued for Laurel Ayotte, Christopher Ayotte Jr., Jacob Ayotte, Ryan Palmer and Candace Fontaine. Each of the five people are facing a felony charge for conspiracy to commit falsifying physical evidence and a misdemeanor charge of conspiracy to commit abuse of corpse, according to police.
"The complaints allege that they conspired to unlawfully remove the body of Mr. Hudson and other evidence from the scene of his death," a social media post from the Newport Police Department said.
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Laurel Ayotte, Christopher Ayotte, Jr., Jacob Ayotte and Candace Fontaine have all been taken to the Sullivan County House of Corrections, without bail pending arraignment, authorities said, who added that Ryan Palmer has not been found and is now considered wanted.
"The cause and manner of Mr. Hudson’s death will continue to be determined by the New Hampshire Medical Examiner’s Office following toxicology testing," the police news release said. "However, based on the evidence gathered by investigators so far, there is no safety threat to the public."
Anyone who has information about this case, or knows the whereabouts of Palmer, has been urged to contact detectives at 603-863-3232 or firstname.lastname@example.org.