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Bella Vista man's death trial-bound

by SALLY CARROLL SPECIAL TO NWA DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE | February 21, 2021 at 2:41 a.m.

PINEVILLE, Mo. -- A Noel, Mo., man accused of murdering a Bella Vista man and dumping his body one year ago will have a pretrial hearing in the spring.

McDonald County, Mo., investigators are charging Henry Bridgeford with first-degree murder, armed criminal action and two counts of second-degree kidnapping.

In the earning morning hours of Feb. 6, 2020, investigators learned a man had been shot and killed while riding in a vehicle with some friends, according to a McDonald County sheriff's office news release. The killing occurred in the southern part of rural McDonald County. Investigators said the assailant shot and killed the victim and forced the others to drive, then dumped the victim alongside Bear Hollow Road.

When investigators found the body, it was turned over to the county coroner for an autopsy. The man was later identified as Christian Zigmunt of Bella Vista.

Bridgeford's pretrial conference is set for 10 a.m. April 21 before Judge John LePage. January proceedings were canceled, according to court records.

Bridgeford is being represented by attorney Kellie Lyn Duckering of Carthage, Mo.

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