A 19-year-old “drifter” who fell victim to a gruesome murder this past spring was allegedly beaten and humiliated by three Galeton residents before he was taken to the woods, choked and abandoned, according to police.
Joshua Ramos, 19, whose address was given as Galeton, was allegedly murdered in April by Krysten L. Crosby, 21, Felicia K. Cary, 23, and Kyle M. N. Moore, 28. All three were in custody as of Tuesday.
While they were driving Ramos to where he was ultimately killed, their van was pulled over by a Westfield Borough Police officer — with Ramos lying in the third seat under a blanket — for a loud exhaust, according to court records. They were issued a verbal warning and sent on their way.
The criminal complaints paint a picture of how the events unfolded.
According to the complaints, in April, Crosby, Cary, Moore, Ramos and a fifth person — whose name was redacted — were at a home in Galeton. The fifth person, who eventually came forward to tell police about the alleged murder, told police that Cary and Crosby were smashing dishes, with Cary using a bat for smashing. A short time later, Moore punched Ramos, knocking him to the floor, and began kicking him in the ribs; soon all three were striking and swearing at him, the complaint stated.
Court records indicate they beat him for about an hour, then began humiliating him.
The complaint stated that they then all got into a van and told Ramos to lie down in the third row seat. They drove to Ole Bull State Park in Stewardson Township, but, concerned they would be spotted on a trail camera, they started driving to Whitman Road in Harrison Township.
On the way there was when they were pulled over and released.
When they arrived at Whitman Road, Crosby, Cary and Moore took Ramos into the woods. They were gone about two hours, and came back without Ramos, the witness told police. On the way back, the three told the witness they had left Ramos in the woods, and began to brag about their actions. The witness told police he heard the three talking about “how tough the victim was and that he wouldn’t die,” the complaint stated.
Ramos was allegedly killed in late March or early April, but law enforcement were not notified of the alleged murder until this past Sunday.
“A person with knowledge came forward and reported information that they knew about the potential that Mr. Ramos may have been murdered,” Potter County District Attorney Andy Watson told The Era on Wednesday.
He was in court Monday when the call came in of the murder report, and he left the courthouse about 11:30 a.m. or so that day to go to the scene, then the state police barracks. He stayed out until around 11 p.m., and in that nearly 12 hours they made an “incredible amount of progress with the case.”
The criminal complaint noted that though the “heavily decomposed” remains found on Monday had yet to be identified, investigators believe the body to be Ramos based on the details they learned of the allegations.
Before the sun rose on Tuesday, two of the three accused — Crosby and Cary — were in police custody in Pennsylvania and had been arraigned before District Judge Christopher Kalacinski. Moore was picked up by police in New York State on Tuesday.
“I can assure the public that the main actors involved in this murder are currently in custody and there’s no present danger to the community,” said Watson.
When asked if there had been a missing person report filed for Ramos, Watson said they checked in several different counties and states for such reports but found none. The information he received indicates Ramos “was more of a drifter from the New Jersey area.”
Moore was slated to be transported from New York state to Pennsylvania later Wednesday, Watson said early that afternoon. Officials planned to try to interview Moore at that time.
Crosby and Cary are incarcerated in Pennsylvania without the possibility of bail.
“I feel very confident in the arrests that we’ve made and that there’s strong corroborating evidence in regard to who was involved in this murder,” Watson said.
The district attorney noted the investigation is ongoing.
Investigators are looking at search warrants, wiretaps and “covering every possible avenue to ensure” they have all the information, he said.
Watson said many people have been working together since the crime was reported who made swift work of the investigation.
“We had a very large number of troopers and criminal investigators including many higher ranking officials in the state police here investigating, and amongst the large number of us that were involved, we were able to put the pieces of evidence together to help solve the crime,” Watson said. “It’s that kind of cooperation and communication that is so important in an investigation like this to ensure that every piece of evidence is analyzed for accuracy and we do everything that we can to ensure that no stone is left unturned.”
Watson added, “I equally appreciate and want to recognize the members of the Pennsylvania State Police that I’ve been working with since Monday for their thoroughness and their dedication to the investigation.”
A preliminary hearing for Crosby and Cary is slated for later this month.
Watson said it is his intent to “seek out and obtain justice for our victim and our victim’s family.”