Document: Knife links man to future mother-in-law's slaying

CLEVELAND - A bloody knife found in a pickup truck helped police connect a man to the slaying of his fiancee's mother, who was found dead just days before he was supposed to be married, investigators said in court documents.

Police in suburban Cleveland say blood on the tactical knife in the truck Jeffrey Scullin had been driving matched that of his future mother-in-law, according to the search warrant affidavit filed Thursday. His DNA was on the knife's handle, authorities wrote.

Scullin, who served as a pallbearer at the woman's funeral, was arraigned Friday on charges including aggravated murder and tampering with evidence.

A judge set his bond at $1 million and his lawyer asked that the case now go to a grand jury. A message seeking comment was left with his attorney.

Scullin, 20, had been living with his girlfriend's parents at their Strongsville home where 49-year-old school teacher Melinda Pleskovic was found dead on Oct. 23.

Investigators said in court documents that Scullin stabbed and shot his future mother-in-law, then ate dinner at a restaurant with her husband and his fiancée.

When the two men returned to the home, both called 911 and said they had found the schoolteacher on the kitchen floor with blood all around.

Pleskovic's husband told a dispatcher that people had been trying to break into their home "all year."

Police reports show the family complained about a series of pranks and minor crimes, including last week when Scullin told police that an unknown man tried to enter the home by forcing open the back door.

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This story has been corrected to show that Pleskovic was found Oct. 23, not Oct. 24.


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