COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Columbus police have arrested a man and accused him of taking a woman’s body to a landfill located hours away.
During a Thursday press conference, investigators announced Gene Scott, 46, of Columbus, had been charged with murdering Renee Benedetti, who police believed to be in a romantic relationship with him. When people close to the couple alerted authorities of a possible murder at the end of January, the Columbus Division of Police filed an endangered missing person report.
Benedetti’s body was found by law enforcement agencies on Wednesday at a Rumpke landfill in Georgetown, Ohio. The waste disposal site is around 50 miles east of Cincinnati, and 105 miles away from Columbus.
“This is an ongoing, active homicide investigation,” Assistant Chief Greg Bodker said. “Our work is far from over.”
Scott and Benedetti were arguing on Jan. 29 when Scott began choking her. Benedetti died at their apartment on Arbor Village Drive in Clintonville near Morse Road. Scott wrapped her up in a rug and later disposed of her at the landfill, according to the complaint filed in Franklin County Municipal Court.
Two days after Benedetti’s death, the Cleveland Division of Police reached out to Columbus police to tell the agency about a possible homicide.
“Us working through them, we were able to collaborate together and work together to kind of take an area and focus our search to that area,” said CPD Commander Mark Denner. “And again, I go back … within two and a half weeks, it’s kind of bittersweet we were able to locate her.”
Scott was also the subject of a federal investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, who implied in court documents that he had been a suspect in Benedetti’s murder since Feb. 8. When searching his home for evidence related to her disappearance, police found a .22-caliber rifle with no serial number. Because Scott is a convicted felon, prosecutors filed charges against him for illegal possession in the U.S. District Court for Southern Ohio.
Authorities said they found Scott in Kentucky 18 hours after the missing person’s report went out. They arrested him on that federal weapons charge and brought him back to Columbus. The joint team of authorities would keep investigating until they ultimately found Benedetti’s body two and a half weeks later.