Police: Pennsylvania man shot cousin, burned his body

BEDFORD COUNTY, Pa. — State police arrested a central Pennsylvania man and charged him with murder after he allegedly killed his cousin and tried to destroy the body.

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State police told WJAC that Derek Louk shot his cousin twice before dragging the body to a hole, piling tires over him, and then dousing the body with kerosene and setting it on fire.

The victim was identified as Tyler Matthai, police told WJAC.

According to court paperwork obtained by WTAJ, Louk had been inside his home with Matthai’s girlfriend when Matthai came in the front door. Louk told police that Matthai dragged his girlfriend outside and threw her in the back seat of a car. Louk then grabbed his AR-15, followed them outside, and pointed the gun at his cousin, according to the police report.

Louk is accused of firing once, hitting his cousin in the arm, then shooting again and hitting him in the back, WTAJ reported.

Matthai’s girlfriend’s grandmother spoke to state police troopers, telling them that her granddaughter had told her that Louk killed Matthai, WJAC reported. The woman told police she was told that Matthai was attacking her granddaughter, and Louk shot him before he could strike her.

Police said that Louk admitted to starting the fire to burn the body, then going to sleep for six hours while he assumed the fire went out, WTAJ reported. Louk told police the next morning that he shoveled dirt on top of the body.