YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Three men are being held in jail, each on $1 million bond, in connection with the death of a man whose body was found Sunday morning.
Police identified the victim as 52-year-old Marion Bugdal. He lived in the Bennington Avenue home in Youngstown, where he was found dead.
The Mahoning County Coroner’s Office said investigators are still waiting for DNA to make a proper identification and haven’t officially ruled on a cause of death.
According to a police report, Bugdal’s friend found him in the kitchen, and two .22 rounds were in front of his face.
Twenty-year-old Alex New, 19-year-old Johnnathen Figueroa and 23-year-old Fred Nolasco were arrested Monday and charged with aggravated murder.
Youngstown Police Lieutenant Doug Bobvnyik said the investigation determined that Bugdal was killed late Thursday night. Police said through a series of police reports, they were able to determine that he knew the suspects.
One of the suspects, Nolasco, was arrested on a weapons charge even before police found Bugdal’s body. The arrest came after police received a report about a man walking through Mill Creek Park on Saturday with a weapon.
Bobvnyik said it is believed that Bugdal was killed during a failed burglary attempt, even though he had little in the rundown house where he lived. Neighbors said there had been a fire there earlier this month, and there was no running water, but Bugdal refused to leave.
They say he also often bragged of having lots of money in the bank, something they took with a grain of salt.
Prosecutors say New was the triggerman, and that he told the others they were going to Bugdal’s house looking for gold bars.
“We believe the motive in this wasn’t drug-related but probably was robbery. We believe these three individuals went to the victim’s house in an attempt to rob him,” Bobvnyik said.
Neighbors said Bugdal was a simple man, perhaps a little eccentric, but didn’t deserve to die.
“Even through he was weird, and maybe mentally off-kilter, nobody deserves that,” one neighbor said.
All three of the suspects are due back in court again later this month.