Missing Professor Was Pushed Off Cliff Into 80-Foot Quarry: Cops

A Penn State professor who went missing last week is now considered a murder victim after cops say he was pushed off a cliff by an acquaintance. 

The body of associate professor of media studies Ronald Bettig was discovered in a central Pennsylvaia quarry was found Thursday after the 56-year-old had been missing for a week.

Pennsylvania State Police took over the case and on Friday arrested George Ishler Jr., 39, and charged him with Bettig's murder.

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Police say Ishler believed he could benefit financially from the professor's death and lured him to the quarry, where he shoved him off an 80-foot precipice. 

According to a criminal complaint, Ishler told police that Bettig had signed a will that left him with "a possibility of financial gain" for him and a woman who'd been living with Bettig.

Police say Ishler confessed to pushing Bettig off the cliff of the quarry after luring him there with the promise of some marijuana plants they could harvest.

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Ishler initially claimed to have last seen Bettig after a beach trip to Delaware on August 12. However, the suspect and the woman with whom Bettig lived reportedly gave police multiple conflicting statements.

Ishler has been charged with First Degree Murder, Third Degree Murder, Aggravated Assault, and Tampering with evidence. 

The suspect has since been arraigned and denied bail. He has a preliminary hearing August 31.

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