Chemung County torture-murder suspect appears in court

Chemung County

ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) — One of the suspects indicted for the torture, disfigurement, and murder of a man in Chemung County appeared in court for pre-trial motions Friday morning.

Thomas Bovaird
Thomas Bovaird

Thomas Bovaird, 21, was brought into the Chemung County Court building just before around 9:45 a.m. on Friday, October 21. This is one of the first times any of the suspects have been seen in court. He was seen leaving the courthouse around noon.

Chemung County District Attorney Weeden Wetmore told 18 News that the October 22 appearance was just a procedural status update and that Bovaird’s next appearance will be December 17.

Last month, the Horseheads man was the first of what would become four men to be indicted for allegedly kidnapping, torturing, burning, disfiguring, and leaving Juan Jose Gotay to die in Potter County.

Two other indictments followed a week later. Eddie Marte, 25, and Malik Weems, 18, were also charged with allegedly kidnapping another Chemung County man in April. They were both previously arrested for a separate kidnapping and torture case in Geneva, raising the number of kidnapping cases surrounding the men to three. It’s unknown if these two other incidents are connected with the Jose Gotay murder.

And at the end of September, a 17-year-old male was found and arrested in Georgia in connection with the case. He was only 16 at the time of the kidnapping. Marte and Weems are scheduled to appear in court next month. The 17-year-old is currently being held in a juvenile detention center.

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