Charged

Matthew Thomas Bernard, 18

During the course of the investigation into a triple homicide at 1949 Keeling Drive Tuesday, Aug. 27, a total of 48 items were seized. 

On Aug. 27, Joan Denise Jefferson Bernard, 62; Emily Bernard Bivens, 25; and Cullen Micah Bivens, 14 months old; were murdered at 1949 Keeling Drive. 

The body of Bernard was found in the driveway according to the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office.

Around 12:15 p.m. Aug. 27, Matthew Thomas Bernard was arrested after appearing naked and unarmed between two homes on Keeling Drive. He was wanted by police as a suspect in the murders. 

Matthew Bernard attacked a bystander at Keeling Baptist Church before running a short distance and being apprehended by a police K-9 and officials on Keeling Drive. 

The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office has charged Matthew Bernard with three counts of first degree murder. 

Commonwealth Attorney Bryan Haskins said there could be additional charges as his office builds the case. 

The items seized by the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office included:

Five cell phones, one of which was an iPhone

Six cartridge cases

One rewards card

One sledgehammer

Three gel lifts

One ammo box

One vehicle key

One silver knife

One Marlin rifle

14 swabs

One paint chip

One .22 revolver

One bullet

Three laptops

Miscellaneous papers

$583 cash

Two nail clippings

One gunshot residue kit

Blood drawn

One baby monitor

One bullet fragment

Matthew Bernard has a court date set in Pittsylvania County for Sept. 5 at 8:30 a.m. 

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