Charge dismissed against man first arrested in Katelyn Markham case

Jonathan Palmerton was facing a perjury charge for lying to investigators, according to the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office.
Published: May. 2, 2023 at 7:48 AM EDT
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BUTLER COUNTY, Ohio (WXIX) - A Butler County judge has dismissed a charge against a man arrested in connection with the case of Katelyn Markham.

Jonathan Palmerton was facing a perjury charge for lying to investigators, according to the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office.

On Tuesday, about two and a half months after his arrest, the judge granted the prosecution’s request to dismiss the charge.

Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser said this is a “temporary dismissal.” The state can seek a new indictment against Palmerton at a later time, court documents explain.

Palmerton was the first person to be arrested in Markham’s case.

A little more than a month after Palmerton’s arrest, the fiancé of Markham, John Carter, was arrested on two murder charges in connection with her 2011 death, Prosecutor Gmoser announced.

The Butler County prosecutor explained in court Tuesday that if Palmerton’s case were to go before Carter’s, it would cause a conflict.

Palmerton is among the state’s witnesses for Carter’s case. Palmerton is also no longer required to wear an electronic monitoring device.

Sometime before Palmerton’s Feb. 17 arrest, investigators executed two search warrants on separate properties, Gmoser previously confirmed.

One property is where Palmerton lived in 2011, a house on Ann Court in Fairfield. The other property is where Carter, Markham’s fiancé at the time, lived.

Markham was last seen at her Fairfield apartment on Aug. 31, 2011, police said at the time.

Carter allegedly was the last person to see her alive and called 911 to report her disappearance.

“I know you’re not supposed to report a missing person before 24 hours, but my fiancé is missing, and I can’t find her anywhere,” he said in the call made more than a decade ago.

Markham’s remains were found nearly two years later, on April 7, 2013, in a rural, wooded area at Big Cedar Creek in southeastern Indiana’s Cedar Grove. A couple looking for scrap metal spotted a human jaw in a plastic grocery bag.

Her death was ruled a homicide, but her cause of death has never been established.

A $1 million surety bond was posted on April 3 for Carter, according to Butler County court records and the sheriff’s office.

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