Trial date set for man accused of murdering woman at resort near Merrifield
Cameron Moser is charged with the 2021 murder of Bethany Anne Bernatsky.
BRAINERD — A trial date was set for Cameron Jay Moser, the 30-year-old man facing first-degree murder charges in the shooting death of Bethany Anne Bernatsky in 2021 at a resort north of Merrifield.
Moser appeared Wednesday, March 29, before Judge Erik Askegaard in Crow Wing County District Court. Moser, along with his public defenders Jordan Olsen and Steve Bergeson, submitted a plea of not guilty before Askegaard moved on to scheduling Moser’s trial. Assistant Crow Wing County Attorney Kelsey Hopps said the state had no scheduling conflicts.
Moser’s trial is set for 9 a.m. Dec. 15 in Crow Wing County District Court. Two pre-trial hearings are scheduled for Nov. 16 and Dec. 1.
Criminal case details
Moser faces felony murder charges stemming from an October 2021 incident at Cozy Bay Resort, north of Merrifield. Moser is accused of shooting 46-year-old Bernatsky, a standout horse trainer and lakes area native who’d recently returned home to stay at the resort as she recovered from cancer treatments. Bernatsky died as a result of gunshot injuries and the manner of death was determined to be homicide by a medical examiner.
In previous court filings in the case, it was reported law enforcement was unable to determine any direct connection between Moser and Bernatsky, though her resemblance with Moser’s ex-girlfriend was noted. The cabin in which Bernatsky was murdered was the previous home of Moser’s ex-girlfriend, whose parents at one time owned the resort.
Moser, who was originally charged with felony second-degree murder, was later indicted by a grand jury on one charge of premeditated murder in the first degree, one charge of felony murder in the first degree and one charge of intentional murder in the second degree.
The first-degree charges carry a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and the second-degree murder charge carries a maximum of 40 years.
TIM SPEIER, staff writer, can be reached on Twitter @timmy2thyme , call 218-855-5859 or email email@example.com .