Teenaged couple suspected in murder of grandparents, Charles and Shirley Severance, in Sterling

STERLING, Colo. - Investigators have arrested a 19-year-old and his girlfriend on suspicion of murdering his grandparents in Sterling.

At a Tuesday afternoon press conference, police said they had discovered the remains of 70-year-old Shirley Severance in two locations late Monday night and early Tuesday morning. One of the crime scenes was at Prewitt Reservoir, about 18-miles from Sterling, and another in Lorenzo, Nebraska. She had previously been considered missing after police discovered the death of her husband, Charles Severance.

Charles Severance, also 70, was found at 409 S. Third Ave., on May 29 after his grandson called to report a medical emergency.   An autopsy performed on Charles found no evidence of injury or trauma, but the toxicology report will require an additional three or four weeks to complete. Police have not said how his wife died.

Brendan Lee Johnson, 19, and his 18-year-old girlfriend, Cassandra Ann Reib, were arrested in the case, police announced. They could face charges of first-degree murder, aggravated robbery, forgery and theft.

"They seemed like a very happy, you know, older couple, that’s just living out their lives and to hear about that is so horrible," said neighbor Janet Lillie.

Police will not say exactly how they were led to the two, but stress the importance of interviews conducted by law enforcement.

Investigators say from the start Johnson was considered to be a person of interest.  They confirm he is the one who alerted authorities about his grandfather's death.

Johnson and Reid are scheduled to appear in court for advisement at 8:45 a.m. on Wednesday.  An autopsy will be performed Wednesday on Shirley Severance in Loveland.

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