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Dad Assured Family He Was Fine, but the Texts Were Weird

Family says the emojis, punctuation didn't match that of Fred Farmer
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 12, 2021 9:47 AM CST
Updated Feb 14, 2021 1:13 PM CST

(Newser) – Last February, three months after Fred Farmer had last been seen, friends and family gathered at his favorite Indianapolis watering hole to plead for information on his disappearance. "I'm just waiting to find out who did something," Farmer's daughter, Christina, told WXIN from the venue. For a moment, the outlet's camera focused on her brother, Jeremy, who was sitting at a table "wide-eyed and silent," reports the Washington Post. "He didn't say a word," a family friend tells WXIN. "He didn't really act like he cared." A year later, the 35-year-old has been charged with his father's murder. Though a body has not been found, police say two people told them that Jeremy, arrested Wednesday, admitted to shooting his father twice in the head and stashing his body in a freezer.

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He's also accused of texting family members from his father's phone, assuring them the 58-year-old was fine but just "stuck in the woods"—but the emojis and punctuation in them were uncharacteristic of Fred. Police say the phone, which remained active until January 2020, never left Indianapolis' west side. Police say they became suspicious upon learning Jeremy had allegedly been using his father's credit and debit cards, including for the purchase of a trash can, bleach, latex gloves, and plastic drop cloths. Fred Farmer, who never returned from what he said would be a hunting trip in November 2019, had told friends that he thought his son was stealing from him and would press charges if it happened again, per the Indianapolis Star. Bank officials told police that Fred previously suspected his son had stolen his credit card, and police say Fred's accounts were updated to use Jeremy's email address and phone number. (Read more murder stories.)

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