The suspect in the brutal stabbing of a 72-year-old woman in Huntington County, Indiana, was arrested by the U.S. Marshals in Georgia on Tuesday, ending a two-month-long search that spanned multiple states.
The gruesome murder of Bernice Eubank
Bernice Eubank, a retired nurse and a beloved grandmother, was found dead in her home near the town of Markle on November 13, 2023. She had suffered multiple stab wounds and signs of a struggle were evident in the house. Her family members, who had not heard from her for several days, reported her missing to the authorities.
The Huntington County Sheriff’s Office launched a homicide investigation and identified the victim’s grandson, Anthony Castleman, 37, as the primary suspect. Castleman, who lived with Eubank, had a history of drug abuse and criminal charges. He had allegedly fled the scene in Eubank’s car, taking her cell phone and other belongings with him.
The hunt for Anthony Castleman
The sheriff’s office obtained a warrant for Castleman’s arrest on a charge of murder and sought the assistance of the Huntington City Police, the Indiana State Police, and the U.S. Marshals. They also issued a public appeal for information and released Castleman’s photo on billboards and social media.
The search for Castleman was complicated by his use of aliases and disguises. He had reportedly changed his appearance by growing his hair longer and wearing a camouflage hat. He had also given a false name, Joseph Phillips, to the police in Rochelle, Georgia, where he had been living on the streets around Christmas.
According to Rochelle’s Police Chief Jimmy Banks, he had noticed an unfamiliar man in the town and had a brief conversation with him. However, he did not realize that he was talking to a wanted fugitive until he saw his photo on the news. He immediately contacted the U.S. Marshals and provided them with Castleman’s location.
The arrest of Anthony Castleman
On Tuesday, December 26, 2023, the U.S. Marshals tracked down Castleman at a convenience store in Rochelle and took him into custody. Castleman initially denied his identity and claimed that his rights were being violated. However, the marshals were able to positively identify him through his distinctive tattoos.
Castleman is currently being held at the Wilcox County Jail in Georgia, awaiting extradition to Indiana. He faces a possible sentence of life imprisonment without parole if convicted of murder.
The Huntington County Sheriff’s Office expressed its gratitude to the public and the law enforcement agencies that helped in the arrest of Castleman. Sheriff Chris Newton said in a statement, “This case has been a priority for our office since the day it happened. We are relieved that he is finally in custody and that justice can be served for Bernice Eubank and her family.”