Thursday, July 17, 2014
Body found on area farm identified
Victim had been missing for a week
The body unearthed last week near a field off Reagle Farm Road has been identified as that of Andrew Fine, 40, of Oxford, the sheriff's department confirmed this morning. Fine had been reported missing on July 7, 2014.
The body was found on the property of Johnny Reagle, who was arrested July 14 after brandishing a severed hand at Duffy's Tavern.
Reagle led authorities to the body, which was buried in a shallow grave at the edge of his field.
Subsequent tests have confirmed that the remains and the hand belong to the same person, said Elizabeth Jones, public information officer for the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff's Department.
Jones said the case was being pursued as a criminal investigation, but declined to comment further.
Fine worked as a mechanic at Laughlin Automotive and Body Shop. A 1992 graduate of Yoknapatawpha County High School, he served for two years in the U.S. Navy before returning to Oxford in 1994.
Surviving him are his wife, Cindy, and a brother, Carl, both of Oxford; his mother, Grace Fine, of Gainesville, Fla.; and a sister, Antoinette Walton, also of Gainesville.
Cindy Fine, interviewed by telephone, confirmed that she had helped investigators identify the remains as her husband's and said she was in "absolute shock" over his death.
An active member of Trinity Church, she said her deep faith and the friendships she'd formed through the church were helping sustain her.
"I've always viewed suffering as a test, and this is the biggest test of all," said Fine.
Carl Fine, the victim's brother, could not be reached for comment.
Burial will be private, and Cindy Fine requested donations to Trinity Church in lieu of flowers.
By Kemper Jones at 11:15 AM