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Two charged after man shot dead and burned

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JACKSON TOWNSHIP, MONROE COUNTY (WOLF) -- Police say a retired priest's son is one of two men charged with shooting and burning a man in Monroe County last year.

We have more on how the victim's body was found and how investigators say the crime happened.

Police say hunting club members on Jackson Road found a body in March 2016.

Court papers say Randy Criste-Troutman, 28, Mount Pocono, admitted his roommate, Demetrio Hughes, 25, was his drug runner selling heroin to small-time users, and owed him about $1,200.

He and Michael Owens, 27, Scotrun, came up with a story, telling Hughes they were going to rob a house, the criminal complaint says.

Criste-Troutman tried to shoot Hughes while they were in the woods, the gun jammed, Hughes ran, and Criste-Troutman tackled him, shooting him in the head, the complaint states.

Three days later, police say Criste-Troutman got gas from Exxon near I-380 and 980, and used Hughes' own clothes to set his body on fire, and later paying Owens $400 for his help.

Then, Criste-Troutman burned his own clothes and the gas can near his home on Trinity Hill Road in a Pocono Mountain Bible Fellowship Church parking lot, the complaint says.

"Most of our neighbors keep an eye to keep people out from up here," says neighbor Jeff Ingrassia. "They'll come up and hang out here behind the church."

Even though the body had been burned, police say they were able to get fingerprints and especially a palm print.

The partial print linked to one recorded in the Tucson Police Department in Arizona, identifying the body as Demetrio Hughes, police said.

Trinity Episcopal Church members say Randy Criste-Trotuman is one of two adopted sons of the former church pastor and his husband. They say Randy was born with drug issues from the birth parents.

"They weren't actually expected to live, and Bob and his partner took them on," says Trinity church memberPeter Salmon.

Salmon says Randy was released from prior time behind bars.

"He was really a nice young man. He jumped in and helped people with things, but he couldn't control that aspect of his behavior," says Salmon, referring to drugs.

Police say during a search of the rectory in 2016, they found drug parephenalia, including 22 empty wax baggies stamped "New Arrival," multiple cell phones, and a digital scale.

'It's tough. It's just bad stuff going on nowadays," says Ingrassa.

But, murder?

"I would not expect that from that young man. It's not his demeanor," says Salmon.

"I'm really glad that they were finally able to catch the people and now we don't have to lock our doors anymore just wondering if they're still out there," says body site neighbor Kyle Leonard.

Police say while Criste-Troutman was locked up in Lackawanna County on a 2016 firearm and drug case from S. Abington Township, they took him on a ride to the Monroe County crime scene, where he told them more about what happened.

Both suspects are locked up in different PA state prisons on other charges. Criste-Troutman is serving a five-to-ten-year sentence.

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