Thursday, April 25

Australian Police Officer Charged With Murdering Jesse Baird and Luke Davies

A police officer in Australia has been charged with murdering two men whose bodies were found on Tuesday in a rural area south of Sydney, and the authorities said he had once had a relationship with one of the victims.

The police commissioner for the state of New South Wales, Karen Webb, said that detectives had found the bodies of the men, Jesse Baird, 26, and his partner, Luke Davies, 29, who had been missing for more than a week, in Bungonia, a small town about 115 miles southwest of Sydney.

“We believe — we are very confident — that we have located Luke and Jesse,” she said at a news conference on Tuesday. She expressed condolences to their families and added that the information about the location of the bodies had come “with the assistance of the accused.”

The police officer, Beaumont Lamarre-Condon, was charged Friday with two counts of murder, according to information provided by the Local Court of New South Wales. He was being held and will next appear in court on April 23. He had legal representation, a spokesman from the court said by email.

Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty said that Mr. Baird and the officer had been in a relationship “at some stage.”

Mr. Lamarre-Condon surrendered to the authorities in Bondi, a Sydney suburb, on Friday, ending a search by detectives in connection with the disappearance of Mr. Baird, a former television host, and Mr. Davies, a flight attendant with Qantas, Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty said separately last week.

A separate statement from the police identified Mr. Lamarre-Condon as an off-duty senior constable attached to a special command.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation quoted court documents as saying the men were murdered between 12:01 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 19.

The discovery of the bodies was the latest development in a murder case that has led investigators across cities and towns in the Sydney area.

The men were last seen in Paddington, an Eastern suburb of Sydney, on Feb. 19, a police statement said. Mr. Davies was reported missing after his family was unable to contact him and he did not report to work, the police said. On Feb. 21, some of their belongings were found in a dumpster in the Sydney suburb of Cronulla, the police said.

A “projectile” found in Paddington was ballistically matched to a New South Wales police firearm, the deputy commissioner said. He said a white van had been found that the authorities believed had been used to transport the bodies.