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Man charged in girlfriend's murder in Bartholomew County had violent criminal past

Patrick Doyle has faced multiple charges in Indiana and Florida over the past 20 years, including aggravated manslaughter in his girlfriend's 2-year-old son's death.

BARTHOLOMEW COUNTY, Ind — A man arrested after the body of a woman was found in Bartholomew County had a violent criminal past, including being charged with aggravated manslaughter in a 2-year-old's death. 

Heather Ann Stuever had been missing for two weeks. Her boyfriend is now preliminarily charged with killing her. 

The Bartholomew County prosecutor is expected to file a formal murder charge this week against 38-year-old Patrick Doyle. 

He was living in Columbus with his girlfriend, 37-year-old Heather Ann Steuver, at her father's house. She was last seen Aug. 21. The mother of three wasn't reported missing until five days after her disappearance. 

Credit: Bartholomew C. Sheriff

Heather's body was recovered on Sept. 9, buried in a shallow grave at a Nugent Sand Company mine on the north side of Columbus. The company would not comment on the investigation.  

Credit: WTHR
Heather Ann Stuever's body was found buried in a shallow grave at this Nugent Sand Company mine on the north side of Columbus.

The detective assigned to the missing persons case found suspicious circumstances from the beginning. 

The investigation first led to the arrest of the boyfriend on a charge of possession of child pornography. Now Patrick Doyle is held at the Bartholomew County Jail on a charge of murder.

Doyle has had multiple arrests in Indiana and Florida over the past 20 years.

In 2002, he was charged in Tampa with aggravated manslaughter in the death of his girlfriend's 2-year-old son. The boy suffered a collapsed skull.

Police believe Doyle then conspired to make the toddler's 6-year-old sister say she accidentally kicked her brother. 

However, prosecutors dropped the case for lack of evidence.

Doyle was also charged in Florida with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

He is still facing theft and burglary charges for property taken from a Columbus home in 2019.

But now he is accused of the most serious crime, the murder of his girlfriend.  

Doyle is being held at the Bartholomew County jail. He's on a 72-hour hold while the prosecutor prepares formal charges against him.

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