Put-in-Bay murder suspect accused of threatening witnesses

Bond raised to $1.5 million

OTTAWA COUNTY, Ohio - Bond has been doubled to $1.5 million for a suspect in Put-in-Bay murder. Prosecutors say he threatened two witnesses.

In addition to the increased bond request, prosecutors also got the court to approve an expanded list of people with whom Brody is to have no contact.

Ottawa County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Mulligan said Zachary J. Brody had several items including cash, clothing and toiletries, when he was taken into custody earlier this month. Since then, Mulligan said Brody acquired a disposable cell phone.

Brody, 27, of Bowling Green, now faces two counts of intimidation of a witness, in addition to murder, voluntary manslaughter, felonious assault charges and other charges.

Police said Brody murdered Philip Masterson, 25, of Westlake in a fit of rage. Investigators said they can prove the murder.

People interviewed by investigators reportedly told them what Brody allegedly said to them. One report reads, "He told me that he dragged him by his ankles in the woods behind the house and rolled him on his stomach and turned his head to the side so he wouldn't drown on blood. He also bid (sic) me that he checked in the morning and (Masterson) was still breathing."

Masterson died of blunt force trauma to the head and strangulation. His body was found in a heavily wooded area on South Bass Island.

Ottawa County Sheriff Bob Bratton said the men met at a party held near where Masterson was spending the Labor Day weekend.

Attorney William A. Settina of Columbus entered a not guilty plea on each count on Brody's behalf.

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