Two people are arrested after the investigation into a Nelsonville man’s death concludes

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NELSONVILLE, Ohio (WOUB) – The Athens County prosecutor has filed charges against two people in connection to the 2021 death of a man that sparked a long and extensive search after his disappearance.

Bryan Kyle Bridgeman, 30, disappeared from his home in Nelsonville on June 4, 2021, after ostensibly going out to buy a video game from a private residence. When he didn’t return, his family reported him missing.

What followed was a monthslong search that stretched until November 10, when authorities finally located Bridgeman’s body in a wooded area not far from his house.

The Athens County Coroner’s Office concluded Bridgeman died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to a release from the Athens County Prosecutor’s office.

The sheriff’s and prosecutor’s offices concurred with the coroner’s assessment. Bridgeman’s grandmother also agreed with their findings, according to the release.

The investigation led to the arrests of Paul Joseph “P.J.” Coon, Jr. and Lindsey Woolever, also known as Lindsey Coon.

P.J. Coon was seen leaving the house with Bridgeman on the day he died. Prosecutors allege as the two passed through the wooded area nearby, Coon gave Bridgeman a gun and Bridgeman shot himself.

Coon, who had a federal conviction and an active warrant in Fairfield County, then allegedly retrieved the gun and fled the state.

Authorities located Coon in Alabama and arrested him after executing a search warrant.

He has been charged with having weapons while under disability and unlawful transaction in weapons.

Coon is scheduled for a change of plea hearing in the Athens County Court of Common Pleas on July 13.

A statement from Coon is what ultimately enabled law enforcement officers to locate Bridgeman’s body.

Lindsey Woolever was present at Bridgeman’s home prior to the incident. She was charged with, and pleaded guilty to, heroin trafficking, unlawful transactions in weapons, and having weapons while under disability.

She faces between five-and-a-half and eight years in prison.

Johnson, Bridgeman’s grandmother, said she’s sad that Coon didn’t come forward earlier to tell her what happened, instead putting her and the community through months of trauma.

She asked that the community give the family privacy to mourn.