FAYETTEVILLE, Tenn. – A man charged with killing his estranged wife and five other people in Tennessee and Alabama sat silently during a court hearing as his attorney asked for a preliminary hearing on additional charges of rape and abuse of a corpse.
Wearing a bulletproof vest over a pink prison suit, Jacob Shaffer never spoke during the Tuesday hearing in the Fayetteville courtroom.
Public defender Donna Hargrove said charges that Shaffer raped his estranged wife multiple times and abused her corpse came to light after his previous preliminary hearing on murder charges.
The judge did not rule and set a hearing for April 6.
Shaffer's estranged wife, Tracie, her teenage son, her father Billy Hall, her brother Chris Hall and a 16-year-old neighbor were found slain in two homes in rural Fayetteville on July 18.
A man described as an acquaintance of Shaffer's was found beaten to death at a Huntsville business, about 30 miles south.
*The Associated Press contributed to this report.
- Nov. 19, 2009: Suspect in Fayetteville slayings complained about cheating wife
- July, 26, 2009: Funeral services held for 3 victims in Fayetteville rampage
- July, 21, 2009: Wife targeted, last to die in Fayetteville rampage
- July, 20, 2009: 5 victims of deadly rampage stabbed, 1 beaten
- July 19, 2009: Tenn. man charged with killing wife, her family
- July 18, 2009: Authorities say slayings in Tenn., Ala. linked