A former naval officer has been arrested in Pennsylvania and charged with the gruesome murder of his writer wife, whose dismembered remains were found scattered in the Georgia woods.
Nicholas James Kassotis, 40, was arrested Friday on felony murder, assault and other charges in the death of Mindi Kassotis, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said in a statement. Press release.
He was arrested a day after she was officially identified using DNA technology, authorities said. Her remains were found in December within a 3-mile radius in the woods of a hunting club in Riceboro, about 40 miles southwest of Savannah.
The GBI enlisted the help of the FBI, which conducted genealogy tests. Swabs were obtained from relatives of Mindi Kassotis to identify her, authorities said.
Kassotis, who also goes by Nicholas Killian James Stark, was arrested in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he awaits extradition to Georgia.
In addition, he is charged with malicious murder, tampering with evidence and removal of body parts from the scene of death or dismemberment, the GBI said in a press release.
The GBI previously said tests determined the remains were placed in the area around November 27.
For months, the identity of Mindi Kassotis was a mystery, and police released a composite sketch in the hope of identifying her, which took about six months.
Officials have not disclosed a possible motive. No documents have yet been filed in the Georgia courts.
Mindi Kassotis was 40 years old and was living in Savannah with her husband at the time of her death, the GBI said. They married in Virginia in 2016, according to the couple’s wedding announcement in the sentinel keene of New Hampshire.
The wedding announcement described her as a writer and business owner and he as a former attorney in the Navy Advocates General Corps.
Kassotis was commissioned in June 2006 and separated from the Navy in August 2019. He most recently served in the Navy Reserve in the Regional Office of Legal Services in the Naval District Washington, D.C., from 2017 to 2019, the Navy said.
Kassotis is scheduled to appear in the Lancaster County Court of Common Pleas for an extradition waiver hearing on Friday. It is not immediately clear if he has an attorney.