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Third suspect arrested in connection to murder victim recovered from Nipomo golf course

Blacklake Golf Course

GROVER BEACH, Calif. - Santa Barbara County Sheriff's detectives arrested a third suspect thought to be involved in the 2018 murder of a Santa Maria man whose body was recovered from a Nipomo golf course last week.

Deputies located the body of Joseph Martin Govey in a pond at the Blacklake Golf Course on Sept. 21. The man was 53 years old when his family had last heard from him in 2018. A missing person report was filed in Orange County back in August of 2019.

35-year-old Kimberly Machleit and 37-year-old Donald Anderson were arrested last week in connection to Govey's murder. Both suspects are from Santa Maria and remain in custody.

Machleit pled not guilty to murder charges last week and is expected back in court on Thursday. She is being held without bail.

Anderson faces charges of being an accessory to murder. He is scheduled to return to court on Oct. 5.

Detectives arrested the third suspect at 4:48 p.m. on Monday while he was reportedly recreating at the same golf course where the victim's remains were located.

The suspect is being booked into the Santa Barbara County Main Jail on charges for murder, conspiracy and accessory to murder. He is also being held without bail.

The investigation is ongoing, but sheriff's officials say it appears the victim was murdered and dismembered in Santa Maria before their body was disposed of in Nipomo. Investigators have not released a motive for the crime.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office tip line at 805-681-4171.

Article Topic Follows: Crime & Courts

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Jessica Brest

Jessica Brest is a digital journalist and assignment editor for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Jessica, click here.


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