LEWISBURG, WV (LOOTPRESS) – A man arrested in connection to a 2007 missing persons case is being arraigned Thursday in Greenbrier County Circuit Court.
West Virginia State Police Deputy Chief of Staff Captain R. A. Maddy has confirmed that indictments were presented against Charles Michael “Cason” Kessinger last month for Murder and First Degree Robbery.
The indictments stem from a missing person complaint received in 2007 by the Lewisburg Detachment of the West Virginia State Police Department pertaining to James Johnsen, a 53 year old male from the Greenbrier County area who had not been seen or contacted by friends or neighbors for an extended period prior to his eventual disappearance.
An extensive investigation was conducted over the subsequent 14 year period, and a break in the case occurred when a call was received by the Greenbrier Sheriff’s Office in September of 2021.
The call received with in regard to skeletal remains which had been located near the Muddy Creek Mountain area of Greenbrier County.
The Greenbrier County Sheriff’s Office crime scene team, along with members of the West Virginia State Police Department – Lewisburg Detachment collected the remains, as well as other evidence found at the scene.
A crime scene report was completed by the Greenbrier County Sheriff’s Office and it was later discovered that the remains were in fact those of missing person James Johansen.
The investigation was continued by members of the West Virginia State Police – Lewisburg Detachment and West Virginia State Police – Bureau of Criminal Investigations based on the previous investigative report and subsequent discovery of the remains.
Following the investigation of both new and old leads, authorities presented Greenbrier County Prosecutor Pat Via with an investigative report on the case.
Via presented the case to the Greenbrier County Grand Jury in October of 2022, at which point the indictments against Kessinger were returned.
West Virginia State Troopers traveled to San Antonio, Texas in October to locate Kessinger, and arrested him at his home by the Texas Rangers and Texas Department of Public Safety.
Kessinger was then extradited back to West Virginia by members of the West Virginia State Police, and is currently at Southern Regional Jail awaiting arraignment.