Ronnie Leon Hyde, the Jacksonville Beach man accused of killing and dismembering a teen in 1994, was informed Tuesday that he faces a maximum 180 years behind bars if found guilty of murder and 12 pornography charges.
The hearing in Judge Angela Cox’s courtroom was Hyde’s first appearance since his arrest last month. He pleaded not guilty.
The victim, 16-year-old Fred Paul Laster of Yulee, had not been identified until 2016 through DNA. His headless torso was found behind a gas station trash bin near Lake City in 1994. Hyde was a youth pastor and friend of Laster and his family. The teen was last seen with Hyde when he was talking about leaving town. His siblings told police Hyde gave several different stories about what happened that day.
Hyde was a volunteer mental health counselor at Crosswater Community Church in Nocatee. The FBI said he has another child exploitation case against him.
Eileen Kelley: (904) 359-4104