Boston man held without bail in death of New Jersey woman

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BROCKTON, MASS. >> A Boston man charged with killing a New Jersey woman whose body was found burning near railroad tracks in Massachusetts has been held without bail.

Fernando Owens pleaded not guilty Thursday to murder and kidnapping in connection with the death of 29-year-old Ashley Bortner.

Bortner's burning and bound body was found near tracks in Bridgewater, south of Boston on Nov. 3.

Owens fled to the Dominican Republic, but was captured last week.

Prosecutors say the 43-year-old Owens thought Bortner was involved in the shooting death of his son, and when she went to his home to persuade him otherwise, he killed her. Prosecutors do not think Bortner was involved in the death. Relatives say Bortner was dating Owens' son.

Owens' attorney says his client "has absolutely denied" involvement Bortner's death.


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