March 13, 2012
Jefferson City, Mo. – Attorney General Chris Koster’s office filed charges today against three individuals for allegedly murdering Edgar Atkinson and Bonnie Chase, and Loyd and Irene Piatt, in two separate incidents in Ripley County. These individuals had already been charged for the deaths of Atkinson and Chase at their home on July 10, 2010. The new charges add the earlier murder at the Piatts’ residence on June 23, 2010.
Charged in the murders of all four individuals are David Youngblood, his daughter Chantele, and Keith Boyles, all from Ripley County. David’s wife, Melissa Youngblood, is also charged with the murders of Edgar Atkinson and Bonnie Chase. Loyd and Irene Piatt were David Youngblood’s aunt and uncle.
The charges maintain that each of the victims was shot to death and their homes set ablaze, allegedly to cover up the crimes.
The Attorney General’s Office has been named Special Prosecutor in the case.
The charges against the defendants are merely accusations and, as in all criminal cases, the defendants are presumed innocent until or unless proven guilty in a court of law.