Jacob Stockdale, who once appeared on an episode of Wife Swap, has been charged with murder. The now 26-year-old reportedly turned himself in on Thursday afternoon for the slayings of his brother, James Stockdale, 21, and his mother, Kathryn Stockdale, 54.
Jacob appeared before a judge at Stark County Common Pleas Court on Friday and pleaded not guilty. His arraignment lasted less than one minute with attorney Wayne Graham entering the plea on his behalf, according to the Canton Rep.
Investigators said an indictment in the 2017 killings had been delayed because Stockdale turned a gun on himself following the murders. The former reality star suffered self-inflicted head and brain injuries that required extensive medical treatment, according to the Stark County Prosecutor’s Office.
The Stockdale brothers were part of a group called The Stockdale Family Band. The band’s website states that Jacob — the alleged killer — won Ohio’s Fiddle Grand Championship, and James was described as “the one with the sparkle in his eye that can create excitement when he wants to on stage or off.”
The 2008 episode of Wife Swap introduced the family as “devoutly religious and have banned TV and video games believing it’s their moral responsibility to censor all that their kids watch and listen to.”
Timothy Stockdale, Jacob’s father, said in a statement at the time that “Kathy has been my beloved wife of 32 years and a wonderful mother to our four sons. She loved nothing more than being a mother and grandmother.” He also said he “appreciates the prayers and support we are receiving from our friends and the community.”
If convicted, Jacob faces 15 years to life in prison for each of the murder charges.
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