Meyersdale man faces trial in death of 19-year-old woman

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MEYERSDALE, Pa. -- A man has been ordered to stand trial on charges of having killed his girlfriend and buried her in a shallow grave near a western Pennsylvania hiking trail last fall.

Twenty-three-year-old Jonathan Beal of Meyersdale is charged in Somerset County with criminal homicide, aggravated assault and abuse of a corpse in the death of 19-year-old Justine Jackson.

Her remains were found Nov. 11 near the Great Allegheny Passage in Meyersdale nearly two months after she was last seen walking nearby.

Several witnesses said Beal told them that he had killed the victim.

Under cross-examination from defense attorney William Seger, one said Beal didn't sound sarcastic and "was really angry."

Friends have said Jackson told them she was pregnant with Beal's child, but those reports weren't mentioned at Friday's preliminary hearing.

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