One suspect in Scottville murder returns from Kentucky, arraigned on five charges
MASON COUNTY — A Scottville man accused of murdering his sister and her boyfriend has been charged with five felony counts related to the homicide.
Patrick Bentley, 21, was arraigned on Thursday in Mason County’s 79th District Court. He is charged with:
- Open murder for the shooting death of Lacey Bentley, a felony punishable by life without parole.
- Felony firearm possession for the use of a firearm in the murder of Lacey Bentley, a felony punishable by two years to run consecutively with the punishment for count one.
- Open murder for the strangulation death of Fernando Ramirez, a felony punishable by life without parole;
- Preparation to burn $20,000 or more, for his attempt to burn the residence, located at 3046 N. Amber Rd., where Lacey Bentley and Ramirez’s bodies were found. This is a felony punishable by confinement up to 10 years and/or $15,000 or three times the value of the property intended to be burned, whichever is greater.
- Unlawful driving away of an automobile, a felony punishable by a maximum of five years confinement.
Bentley and his co-defendant, 19-year-old LeShawn Whipple, are accused of killing Ramirez and Lacey Bentley on Jan. 27 at a home police believe all four people shared. Bentley and Whipple fled the scene and headed south, eventually stopping in Kentucky, where they ran out of gas and were subsequently apprehended.
While leaving the state, the pair passed through Osceola County and picked up a 16-year-old boy in Reed City. Police don’t believe he is connected to the crimes and he had since been returned to his family.
Bentley waived extradition last week and arrived in Mason County Thursday morning. Whipple also waived extradition in Kentucky last week, but has not yet arrived in Mason County and is yet to be arraigned on charges.
A preliminary examination for Bentley has been scheduled for 11:15 a.m. on Feb. 22 at the Mason County Courthouse. He is held in the Mason County Jail without bond.
Investigation is ongoing by the detectives of the Mason County Sheriff's Department.