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Preliminary hearing set for three murder suspects

By Shay Arthur
Published On: Mar 03 2014 09:27:58 PM CST
Updated On: Mar 03 2014 11:23:10 PM CST
REDDING, Calif. -

Three people charged in two separate murder cases are set to have their preliminary hearings Tuesday.

The cases are separate but includes some of the same people.

33-year-old Joshua McCormick and 22-year-old Rebecca Wilson are charged with murdering two people in Ingot in October 2013.

Another case is Byron Willis, he is accused of killing another man at a Redding home in November 2013.

The body of the victim was later found in a burning truck in Millville.

The evidence against the three suspects will be presented in a preliminary hearing on Tuesday.

It all began on the chilly night of October 25, 2013 in Ingot.

Two bodies with gunshot wounds were discovered.

One was inside a burning travel trailer and another inside a small cabin.

They were identified as 65-year-old Tommy Burton and 57-year-old Michael Forsyth.

Fast forward nine days and another body with gunshot wounds was found burning in a pickup truck on Bass Pond Road in Millville.

"For our office historically it was one of the more complex cases that we've seen in recent years," said Sergeant Brian Jackson of the Shasta County Sheriff's Office.

Investigators said it all stems back to a robbery gone wrong.

Suspects McCormick and Wilson planned to burglarize the Ingot property but were confronted by Burton and Forsyth, who they alleged murdered.

Investigators said a man named Eric Ratledge was with McCormick and Wilson at the time of those alleged murders.

"It took a lot of resources for us to get to the bottom of things," explained Jackson.

For the next case, another suspect named Byron Willis comes into play.

Detectives said a few days after the Ingot incident Ratledge was at a home on Rancho Road in East Redding.

It was at the home that Willis allegedly shot Ratledge in the side of the head.

He was angry about an affair Ratledge had supposedy had with his wife.

At that same home was McCormick.

Detectives said Mccormick admitted he too shot Ratledge, saying he, "put him out of his misery and not suffer."

Ratledge's body was then dropped off in Millville and found in the back of a burning pickup.

A preliminary hearing is set to begin tomorrow morning.