Man sought in deaths of four men in Oklahoma to be held in Florida jail on no bond, judge rules

Joe Kennedy, a man considered to be a "person of interest" after four men were reported missing and later found dead in Oklahoma, will be held in a Florida jail without bond, a judge ordered on Wednesday.

Kennedy, 67, was arrested Tuesday in Daytona Beach Shores on a charge of grand theft after being stopped by an officer while driving a stolen truck, according to the Daytona Beach Shores Department of Public Safety.

He made his initial court appearance on Wednesday.

A judge set Kennedy's bond on the grand theft charge at $2,500 and noted he had another bond for a separate 2012 case out of Oklahoma.

"The bond on that is $500,000, but based on the circumstances which have come to my attention, I’m going to have you held on no bond at this point and time," the judge said. "For public safety and for Mr. Kennedy’s situation, I think no bond is appropriate," he said. 

The judge said Kennedy's public defender or attorney could file a motion for a bond hearing, but that for the time being, it is for the best that Kennedy remains behind bars.

Kennedy confirmed his name to the judge, told him he did not hear all that well and said he understood the court procedures. It's unclear why he was in Daytona Beach Shores or Florida.

Daytona Beach Shores is nearly an 18-hour drive from Okmulgee, Oklahoma, where the death investigations are being conducted. Other than being named a person of interest and local authorities wanting to ask Kennedy questions, he has not been named a suspect or charged with a crime in those investigations.

Last week, four friends – Mark Chastain, 32, Billy Chastain, 30, Mike Sparks, 32, and Alex Stevens, 29 – were reported missing in Oklahoma, and later found dead. Their dismembered bodies were reportedly found in a river.

The Okmulgee Police Department said the four friends were last seen leaving Billy Chastain's house on bicycles on Oct. 9. A witness reportedly told that the four men were planning to commit a crime, though it was not clear what type of crime they allegedly planned to commit, FOX News reports.

Okmulgee police said it would begin the process of extraditing Kennedy back to Oklahoma. 

"The murder investigation is ongoing and investigators continue to follow leads every day. Additional information will be relayed when it is available," the police department said in a Facebook post.