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Inside Pennsylvania home where pregnant Amish woman was slain, police find guns and broken knife parts

State police arrest suspect in relation to killing of pregnant Amish woman
State police arrest suspect in relation to killing of pregnant Amish woman 00:47

Police investigating the killing of a pregnant Amish woman inside her Pennsylvania home last week recovered three firearms, bullets and two spent casings as well as broken knife parts, according to an inventory made public on Tuesday.

The state police document said the search of the house where Rebekah A. Byler was killed on Feb. 26 produced the broken orange handle of a knife, a broken knife blade and a bone-handled knife. Investigators also took a white bonnet and the contents of an ash tray, trash can and dust bin.

A man who lived about 8 miles (13 kilometers) from the Byler home in northwestern Pennsylvania was charged Saturday with criminal homicide, homicide of her unborn child, burglary and criminal trespassing. Police have not disclosed what they think may have motivated Shawn C. Cranston, 52, to kill her in the living room, where her husband and a family friend found her.

A pregnant Amish woman was found dead inside her home in Crawford County. (Photo: Provided)

It's unclear from the search inventory if any of the items taken belonged to Cranston or were used in the killing, which police have said involved "shooting her in the head and/or slashing her throat." They include a .22-caliber rifle, two shotguns and a variety of ammunition. Investigators also recovered a .22-caliber cartridge case and a 6.5 Creedmoor casing, both discharged.

Cranston remains in the Crawford County Correctional Facility without bail. No defense attorney has appeared in court records, and the county public defender's office said Monday it was not representing him. Family members have not answered phone calls seeking comment on his behalf.

Police said the 23-year-old Byler, whose two children were home but unhurt, suffered wounds to her neck and head.

Cranston's cousin, Rebekah Cranston of Erie, said Tuesday that Cranston was a native of the Corry area and had worked as a truck driver. She said she had fallen out of touch with him in recent years and that many of his relatives knew nothing about the allegations.

"We're just in shock and sending out prayers for the victim," she said.

Shawn Cranston's next-door neighbor, Chris Knight, said he was a "respectful" neighbor who often rode motorcycles. His wife is a nurse, she said.

Knight said that in recent months Cranston's pickup truck was no longer parked at the home. The Cranstons seemed to be down to one vehicle, she said, a red Jeep.

"It seemed like he's been home a lot but I don't know what that situation is," Knight said.

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