DeWine on Pike Co. shootings: Someone involved ‘knew the territory’

Published: Thursday, August 04, 2016 @ 3:23 PM
Updated: Monday, August 08, 2016 @ 1:47 PM

WHIO’s John Bedell recently touched base with Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine regarding the investigation into the unsolved April 22 fatal shootings of eight Rhoden family members in Pike County.

UPDATE @ 12:52 p.m. Aug. 8

 

WHIO’s John Bedell recently touched base with Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine regarding the investigation into the unsolved April 22 fatal shootings of eight Rhoden family members in Pike County.

 

DeWine said the murders were “well planned” and executed by more than one person. He said at least one person involved was familiar with the properties where the bodies were found. While investigators have made progress, DeWine said the outcome is still nowhere in sight.

 

A closer look at the 8 victims

 

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“I’ll tell you we know a lot more today that when we first started,” DeWine said. “We’re still not to the point where we can say, ‘we’re gonna go arrest someone.’ We’re just not to that point yet.”

 

DeWine has kept a tight lid on releasing details of what investigators are learning. Autopsy reports have been withheld from the public.

 

“The reason for that is there’s certain facts that only — at this point — only the murderer knows,” he said. “We don’t want to broadcast those facts. Because once you do, it becomes much more difficult to judge the credibility of something someone comes in and tells you.”

 

DeWine reiterated statements he made at the outset, that “this could be a long investigation.”

 

“It really is like putting together a big, say thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle,” he said. “We’re putting in pieces. A piece here, a piece here, a piece here. At some point it becomes clear. You start seeing a picture and at some point, you figure it out.”

 

Thank God they didn’t take the babies

 

In response to a question on whether the shooters knew the victims, DeWine said certainly those responsible “knew the territory.”

 

“Someone was involved who knew that area, and probably knew those homes and at least some of the people who were victimized. But beyond that I really can’t say.”

 

DeWine responded to questions about the marijuana that was found growing on two properties where bodies were found.

 Pike County shooting: The latest 

“Clearly, this was a serious commercial operation,” said DeWine, who would not confirm whether there are any connections to international drug cartels.

 

“I don’t want to be in a position where we confirm or deny any kind of theory. I don’t think that would be fair as far as our investigation is concerned and our ability to find out who did this,” he said.

 

EARLIER

 

The three surviving children of the victims of the Pike Co. shooting massacre in April that left 8 members of the Rhoden family dead, are in danger according to Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader.

 

According to a report from the Columbus Dispatch, Reader testified at a court hearing and said that the Rhoden family, specifically the three children in the homes where the murders occurred, remain in danger.

 

He also confirmed his investigators are looking for multiple killers, according to the report.

 

No arrests have been made yet for the killings.

 

Reader’s testimony came in a hearing to keep proceedings about the surving Rhoden children closed to the public and the media.

 

Reader told Pike County Juvenile Judge Robert Rosenberger: “I believe if the information about the minor children is released, it would put the minor children or their caregivers in grave danger.”

 

The judge is considering access to hearings for 9-month-old Ruger Rhoden and 3-month-old Kylie Rhoden, both of whom are in foster care.

 

Florida man arrested after bombs, ammo, school maps found in home

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 9:55 PM

This undated photo released by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, shows Randall Drake in Fla. Sheriff's deputies conducting a child porn raid on Drake's Florida home found an arsenal of guns and explosives and a homemade silencer, along with a note promising
This undated photo released by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, shows Randall Drake in Fla. Sheriff's deputies conducting a child porn raid on Drake's Florida home found an arsenal of guns and explosives and a homemade silencer, along with a note promising "bloody revenge."(Pinellas County Sheriff's Office via AP)

A Florida man was arrested after homemade bombs, an AK-47 assault rifle, ammunition and school maps were discovered inside his bedroom. 

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said in a news conference Thursday that deputies were set to search the home Randall Drake, 24, of Dunedin, Florida, shared with his parents for a child pornography investigation.

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During a search of Drake’s bedroom on Wednesday, authorities said detectives found explosives and numerous firearms in a locked closet, The Associated Press reported.

The weapons included the following:

  • An AK-47 rifle with a 60-round clip
  • A .308-caliber rifle
  • A .50-caliber pistol
  • A 12-gauge shotgun
  • Numerous other handguns
  • About 15 knives
  • A baseball bat with protruding nails in it 
  • A crossbow
  • Brass knuckles
  • A container of gunpowder
  • More than 2,300 rounds of ammunition
  • Three incendiary devices
  • A homemade silencer
  • Tactical vests

Detectives also said they found a map and aerial images of an elementary and middle school in Tampa, Florida, as well as the Hillsborough County Water Treatment Plant. According to deputies, journals and a handwritten letter that talked about revenge were also discovered.

In this undated photo released by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, a weapons cache is shown in the home of Randall Drake.(Pinellas County Sheriff's Office via AP/AP)

Gualtieri said his office is trying to figure out why Drake had the incendiary devices and what he was going to do with them.

Drake has since posted $20,000 bond. He faces two charges of unlawfully making, possessing or attempting to make a destructive device.

NEW DETAILS: Police used GPS data to find Dayton man’s body in creek

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 6:18 PM

Charles Romine
Charles Romine

GPS data was received during the 911 call Charles Romine made Sept. 18 when he was confused about where he was, but dispatchers “are trained that the primary source of location information comes from the caller,” according to a statement sent out Friday afternoon by Dayton police.

Romine, 71, was found dead two days later — Sept. 20 — at least three miles northwest of the downtown Dayton location he described in his 2:22 p.m. call Sept. 18.

The statement said historical GPS data was used by a Special Victims Unit detective to locate Romine’s deceased body in Wolf Creek near the area of Philadelphia Drive and James H. McGee Boulevard. The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said it will not comment until its investigation is complete.

RELATED: Family, friend talked to 911 the day before man’s body was found in creek

“The Dayton Police Department extends our sincere condolences to the family of Charles Romine regarding their loss,” the Friday release said. “Several attempts have been made to meet in person with members of Mr. Romine’s family to inform them about the investigation and the extensive efforts of the Dayton Police Department to locate Mr. Romine.”

The statement said: “In examining the original dispatch record, it was learned that GPS data which contains longitude and latitude information was received during the initial 911 call from Mr. Romine’s cell phone.”

Dayton police denied a public records request from this news organization for internal emails about the efforts to get information from Romine’s cell phone provider.

When Romine called 911, he said: “I need a rescue. I’ve been on these rocks for, like, three hours.”

RELATED: Vigil for Dayton man found in Wolf Creek turns into call for justice

He also said he didn’t want to be humiliated, but that he knew he needed help. “I don’t want to be looking embarrassed, that’s the main thing,” Romine told the dispatcher. “But I don’t want to lose my life, either.”

Dayton police’s Friday statement also said: “At times, the GPS coordinates are not available or can be less accurate than the information provided by a caller. Hence, Montgomery County Regional Dispatch personnel relied upon location information as provided by Mr. Romine.”

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The statement provided a series of some events “after an internal review of records and information from Montgomery County Dispatch Center.” They included: Romine called 911 and said he was in the alley across from the Community Blood Center; A Check Welfare call was generated and two officers responded; Dispatchers called Romine’s number twice but could not get through.

On Sept. 19, Romine’s relatives reported him missing and two Dayton officers were dispatched. At the request of officers, the regional dispatch center attempted to locate current GPS coordinates from the cellular phone provider, but Romine’s cellular phone was not communicating with the network, according to the statement.

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Romine’s family planned to meet at 1 p.m. Saturday on the bridge over Wolf Creek to march to the Dayton police department and City Hall. The family has told this news organization that they feel the case was an injustice.

Dayton police said the investigation into Romine’s death is still open pending a coroner’s report..

Moraine police shooting: Who is Jamarco McShann?

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 2:57 PM

Jamarco McShann
Jamarco McShann

The man shot by Moraine police early Friday wrote he “DID NOT think like a productive member of society” and asked for mental health assistance, according to a motion for judicial release he filed Nov. 24, 2015, while he was a prisoner at Lebanon Correctional Institution.

Jamarco D. McShann, 23, was shot and killed by Moraine police Friday morning while two officers responded to a suspicious vehicle report. Moraine police Chief Craig Richardson said McShann pointed a handgun at the officers.

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Jamarco McShann filed two separate motions for judicial release during his three-year sentence for three cases, the most recent one for having weapons under disability.

Jamarco McShann is the younger brother of Curtis McShann, who was sentenced earlier this month to 60 years to life in prison for the shooting death of Brandon Lanier in 2016.

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Jamarco McShann also had a younger brother, Jamal McShann, who was shot to death in October 2013 in Dayton.

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“I might have a chemical imbalance that causes me to have irrational thoughts,” Jamarco McShann wrote while requesting a release to join the MonDay treatment program. “The prison that I am in does not offer a class or counseling which will give me an in-depth look into my mind and why I think this way.”

Jamarco McShann was released from prison Aug. 2, 2016. Neither of his two motions for judicial release were granted by Montgomery County Common Pleas Court Judge Dennis Adkins.

In the November 2015 motion, McShann wrote that his institutional record “is not without imperfections” and that his fiance and young son were struggling financially.

6 officer-involved shootings in the area in the last year

He also wrote that two out of three children in the United States with at least one parent incarcerated go on to become incarcerated themselves.

PHOTOS: Scene of the shooting

“Although going to the MonDay program won’t allow me to help them financially,” he wrote, “it would help me figure out why I think this way and then I can help my son think in a more productive way.”

In a May 2015 motion for judicial release, McShann wrote that he and eight siblings were raised by his mother and he was working toward his GED despite learning disabilities.

“Mr. McShann is adamant on obtaining legal employment, and working his way up the ladder legally” said that motion, written in third person, later adding that he “has evolved into a new man who is ready to live a productive and positive life in society, not prison.”

FBI raids property; owner has sued local, federal government

Published: Friday, October 20, 2017 @ 5:25 PM

Police have the 2300 block of Schelly Road closed.

The Spring Valley man whose home was raided by law enforcement for the second time in two years is a former Wright-Patterson Air Force Base employee who twice sued the federal government and has a pending appeal against Greene County for malicious prosecution, according to court documents.

The 2302 Schnebly Road home of Joel Montgomery, 48, was raided Thursday morning by FBI, ATF and other law enforcement agencies acting on a federal search warrant, according to FBI spokesman Todd Lindgren. Montgomery was arrested and is in Montgomery County Jail awaiting a court hearing.

Lindgren didn’t confirm or deny if the raid was in connection to a 2015 raid of the property by Greene County Sheriff’s deputies. Lindgren said all court documents related to Thursday’s raid were under seal in federal court.

RELATED: Property owner arrested, FBI searching his property

The 2015 raid netted 175 weapons but Greene County prosecutors dismissed the second-degree misdemeanor case against Montgomery onSept. 30, 2015, according to common pleas and municipal court records obtained by this news organization.

In September 2016, Montgomery sued Greene County’s sheriff, county commissioners and the prosecutor’s office, alleging malicious prosecution tied to the 2015 raid. Montgomery’s attorney in that case didn’t return a message seeking comment. A message left seeking comment was not immediately returned by the Greene County Prosecutor’s Office.

Xenia Municipal Court records indicate a neighbor said he thought Montgomery fired shots that went above a makeshift shooting backstop on his property and struck the neighbor’s detached garage, bike trailer and pickup in June 2015.

RELATED: Dozens of firearms seized in Greene County

“How’s this gonna end boys?” one deputy said Montgomery remarked when they investigated the claim, according to a statement of facts filed in court.

One deputy “observed what he described to be approx. one thousand spent casings of what appeared to him to be .223 caliber ammunition at the front door of suspect Montgomery’s residence,” according to the statement of facts.

The deputies also heard what sounded like automatic gunfire after they left Montgomery’s home but didn’t leave the area that same day, according to the statement of facts.

Montgomery’s lawsuit against Greene County noted a June 24, 2015 search warrant, but Xenia Municipal Court officials had no access Friday to such a document, so any search warrant could be under seal.

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Montgomery alleged in the Greene County lawsuit that his ex-wife received calls from the sheriff’s office that their children were in danger and that deputies were looking for derogatory information to provide to Children Services.

The lawsuit said Greene County law enforcement seized all computer equipment, all weapons, all antique guns, parts, cash, gold and other valuables. The suit asked for more than $325,000 in damages.

Montgomery’s lawsuit ultimately was dismissed by visiting Judge James Brogan. In July 2017, Montgomery appealed the decision to the Second District Court of Appeals, where it is ongoing.

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Montgomery sued the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Air Force, the Air Force’s office of special investigation and some individuals alleging unlawful electronic surveillance of him, according to a complaint filed in 2013 in Dayton’s U.S. District Court.

In that lawsuit, Montgomery said he found a GPS device underneath his vehicle, a camera in the WPAFB office in which he worked and a bug in his home, all from 2006 to 2007. At the time, Montgomery said he had certain security clearance and worked for the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) and at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), according to the complaint.

Montgomery’s suit said that from 2002 to 2004 he was a program manager in charge of the Electro-Optical Materials Intelligence Group of GDAIS, a Dept. of Defense contractor.

The complaint said that because of derogatory information, Montgomery was placed on leave without pay and later terminated. Messages seeking comment from GDAIS and Montgomery’s federal lawsuit attorney were not immediately returned.

Both federal suits ended with a stipulation of dismissal filed in August 2014.