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Joseph Wielzen

A McMinn County, Tennessee, man charged with the rape and murder of an 18-year-old Etowah woman will remain in jail after he was arrested for vandalism last month.

In May, Joseph R. Wielzen was arrested along with Victor L. Felix after they were identified as occupants of a dark Jeep Cherokee from which eggs were hurled at a couple of residents' cars and a house. Police found the Jeep with egg yolk running down the window, court records state.

Both were charged with four counts of vandalism, according to court documents.

At the time of his arrest, Wielzen had been out on bond while awaiting trial for the 2017 rape and killing of Kelsey N. Burnette.

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Kelsey N. Burnette

He was charged in that case but had been released on the reduced bond of $30,000 after his case was transferred to adult court. He was not required to wear an ankle monitor, but he was ordered to not use or possess illegal intoxicants, commit any new criminal offenses or have contact with Burnette's family, court records show.

But last month's vandalism charges violated those conditions.

During Tuesday's hearing before Judge Sandra Donaghy, Wielzen's bond was revoked and he was ordered to remain in jail during the hearing before Judge Sandra Donaghy, according to McMinn County Circuit Court officials.

The homicide case is now nearing two years old.

Burnette, who graduated from McMinn Central High School a couple of months before her death and worked at the local McDonald's restaurant, was reported missing by her family on July 1, 2017.

She was last seen walking through Etowah around 5 a.m. that day. Her body was found by a passerby on Charles Street on July 4, 2017, and identified two days later.

Contact Ben Benton at bbenton@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6569. Follow him on Twitter @BenBenton or at www.facebook.com/benbenton1.

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