Officials have released the identification of the man found dead as a result of a gunshot wound near the St. Joseph River trail in Montpelier On October 23 as Jonathan M. Hofner, age 28, of Wauseon.
The positive identification of Hofner had been delayed pending autopsy and dental record comparisons.
Bradly Gilbert, 22, of Montpelier, Ohio was arrested in Surry County, North Carolina and subsequently charged with Aggravated Murder after he confessed to a Surry County law enforcement officer that he had “killed a man” in Ohio and provided details on where to find the body. The identification of Jonathan Hofner as the victim came the same day that Gilbert was extradited back into Ohio to face the charge.
Municipal Court records related to the charge indicate that on or around October 10, Gilbert used a firearm to kill Hofner. Hofner had been reported missing about two weeks prior to the discovery of his body. Gilbert’s statements to Surry County law enforcement included that his crime had been committed before he had traveled to North Carolina on October 11.
Gilbert is currently being housed at the Corrections Center of Northwest Ohio, where he will stay while he awaits trial.