Friends of murdered girl try to make sense of death

September 20, 2011

Earlier Tuesday, a judge denied bond for Dustin McCowan, 18, a former boyfriend of Amanda Bach's, now charged with killing her. McCowan pleaded not guilty to murder charges during a court appearance Tuesday.

Bach's friend Heather Hutchins said she came to the field "to just pretty much let Amanda know we have a lot of people who love her. She was loved."

An investigators' report reveals McCowan told detectives Bach, 19, had visited him at his Wheeler, Ind., home. He told police she left and did not respond to text messages.

A neighbor told police she heard what she thought was a male voice say, "Amanda get up, come on, get up." The neighbor indicated that she heard this approximately five times and then a female voice that said, "I can't believe this is happening."

Prosecutors have not said what may have motivated the murder, but friends have their own theories.

"They weren't friends after their last breakup and she asked him if they could be friends just for me, so that when I came home we could all hang out at the same time," said friend Brandon Hutchins. "He told her two weeks ago that he never wanted her to text him again because she was coming between me and him."

Friend Tara Adams said she is trying to make sense of what happened.

"There's no motive there's no… we just don't understand," Adams said. "As a person, nobody would have ever expected anything like that out of him."

An autopsy revealed that Bach died of a gunshot wound to the neck. Her body was found Saturday along railroad tracks near McCowan's home.

McCowan's father is a police officer. Court filings report he would not allow detectives to search the property on the day after her disappearance. Those same reports also described the suspect's father as otherwise cooperative.

Services for Bach will be held later this week.

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