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Saturday, April 10, 2021

Update: Grand jury to get Ole Miss slaying case, Fort Worth suspect held without bail

HARMONTOWN, Miss. (AP) — Authorities say the case of a slain University of Mississippi student will be turned over to a grand jury.

District Attorney Ben Creekmore told WREG-TV on Thursday that a motion has also been filed to withhold bail for the Fort Worth man charged in the case. Brandon A. Theesfeld is charged with murder in the death of 21-year-old Alexandria “Ally” Kostial, who was found shot to death last weekend.

Surveillance video released by the city shows Kostial, a resident of the St. Louis area in Missouri, leaving a bar Friday night and being picked up by a van. Kostial’s roommate said Kostial arrived home around midnight. Hours later, deputies in Harmontown found Kostial shot to death about 30 miles from university grounds. It’s unclear what happened between midnight and the time her body was found. 

Theesfeld, 22, was later arrested at a gas station in Memphis, Tennessee. He remains jailed. No bail has been set.

The Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department told reporters Wednesday that a preliminary autopsy determined Kostial died of gunshot wounds.

Ole Miss spokesman Rod Guajardo said Theesfeld, a student of business administration, has been suspended from the university.

Kostial was studying for a bachelor’s degree in marketing. Her father, Keith Kostial, posted on Facebook that his daughter had been attending summer school and teaching fitness classes at the university.

Theesfeld’s father, Dr. Daniel Theesfeld, told WMC-TV that his son didn’t kill Kostial.

“I know my son is innocent,” the father said. “And I have reasons to believe that. I can’t share anything now. But I would ask everybody to please give him the presumption of innocence until proven otherwise.”

Lawyer Swayze Alford, who represented Theesfeld in an appearance Tuesday morning appearance before a judge, didn’t return a phone call or email seeking comment.

Lafayette County Circuit Judge Andrew Howorth agreed to consider whether to set bail for Theesfeld at a later date.

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