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Published: Thursday, August 04, 2016 @ 3:23 PM
Updated: Monday, August 08, 2016 @ 1:47 PM
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.
“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.”
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.
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.
Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 3:21 PM
LEBANON — A Warren County grand jury will review the case against Samuel Ronan, the former political candidate arrested earlier this month after a struggle with Springboro police.
Judge Gary Loxley bound over the case against Ronan, 28, of Springboro, after ruling there was probable cause to indicate he obstructed justice on June 9.
Loxley ruled immediately after a hearing on Tuesday in Warren County Court.
During the hearing, Assistant County Prosecutor Amy Gill and defense lawyer James Calhoun questioned Springboro Sgt. Randy Peagler, the officer who reportedly pulled over Ronan after observing him in a road-rage incident.
Peagler told Gill he followed Ronan for about 0.3 miles after turning on his lights and sirens and that Ronan went back to his car and began walking toward him with a blue bag and his cellphone, flash on and recording for Facebook Live.
Peagler said he hurt his foot and suffered road rash wrestling with Ronan, who recently contested the re-election of Congressman Steve Chabot in the May primary.
Calhoun established that Ronan, a member of the U.S. Air Force Reserves, never put his hands on Peagler during the altercation and that Ronan, although permitted to carry a concealed weapon, was apparently unarmed.
Calhoun also emphasized that Ronan said he didn’t see Peagler’s police cruiser until he pulled into the parking lot of his apartment complex and said there was no “overt act” that supported the felony charge.
Calhoun said Ronan was within his rights to ask why he was being arrested before getting on the ground as ordered repeatedly by Peagler, with his gun and then a stun gun drawn.
But Loxley agreed with Gill, who argued Ronan “absolutely” obstructed justice by resisting being taken into custody by Peagler and another officer who assisted in handcuffing him.
Published: Thursday, May 17, 2018 @ 7:12 AM
Updated: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 2:30 PM
— UPDATE @ 2:30 p.m., Tuesday, July 19
Oral arguments in Brock Turner’s appeal of his sexual assault conviction will be held next month, according to court documents.
The Oakwood High School graduate and registered sexual offender’s appeal will be heard July 24 in San Jose, California.
UPDATE @ 10 a.m., Monday, May 21
Brock Turner’s attorney has asked the court to reschedule oral arguments in his appeal case, according to a court docket. A new date has not yet been scheduled.
Oral arguments in Brock Turner’s appeal of his sexual assault conviction are scheduled for next month, according to a California appellate court spokesman.
The Oakwood High School graduate and registered sexual offender’s appeal will be heard by a panel of three justices from California’s Sixth District Court of Appeal. Turner’s counsel and the state’s attorney will present arguments and answer questions during the June 28 hearing in San Jose, California.
The justices will then deliberate and later issue an opinion, said Cathal Conneely, the court’s spokesman.
The scheduling comes as Turner’s legal team drops several claims that would have allowed a re-trial or a re-sentencing on one or more counts, according to a court document filed by Turner’s attorney, Eric Multhaup.
The decision to withdraw a handful of the claims, Multhaup wrote, “was reached in large part out of consideration for appellant’s (Turner’s) family and out of consideration for Jane Doe and her family.”
Doe is the unidentified victim in the 2015 sexual assault at Stanford University. The 2016 case — and Turner’s sentence — sparked a nationwide controversy and wide-ranging discussions about sexual assaults on college campuses.
A jury found Turner guilty on three felony counts: assault with intent to commit rape of an intoxicated or unconscious person, penetration of an intoxicated person, and penetration of an unconscious person. Turner was sentenced by Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky to six months in jail, but served three months of the sentence.
Turner returned to Ohio and lives in Greene County, where he is a Level III sex offender — Ohio’s most-strict classification.
In a court filing earlier this year, the state’s attorney argued there was “substantial evidence from which a rational jury could find appellant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of all three charges.”
Turner’s attorney declined comment. Doe’s family friend, Stanford law professor Michele Dauber, also declined comment.
Read more coverage:
Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 1:38 PM
Dayton Police Department officers found evidence of possible dog fighting after a loose dog charged a man and his puppy, prompting the man to kill the loose dog.
Two DPD officers arrived in the 100 block of Malden Street in Dayton after a man reported a dangerous animal in the area, according to a police incident report. At about 8:30 p.m., the caller was on his front porch and the loose dog charged the caller and his puppy and he stabbed the dog in the throat with a rod, he told officers. The dog retreated to its yard.
The officers found the dog — which appeared to be a brown bull mastiff — dead in the grass at the north side of the property. The dog had been loose all day, according to the report.
Around noon, the dog had charged three women walking down the street, and the man said he chased it away from them with a gardening tool.
Caged on the property were five or six dogs of varying sizes, according to the report, and another dog was barking inside the residence. The dogs appeared to be the same breed as the dead dog. One of the doors to the cages was open, and there was a large hole in the fence. The caller told officers that no one appeared to live at the residence, but he had seen vehicles coming and going.
Officers could not tell whether the animals had food or water. They also saw a post in the middle of the yard and a chain hanging from a tree, which “can often be indicators of dog fighting,” according to the report.
An officer knocked on the door of the residence and said it smelled like something was dead inside. He could not see inside the residence well enough to gauge the welfare of the dog inside.
The officers photographed the dead dog and the living conditions of the other dogs and attempted to close the hole in the fence.
Published: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 12:39 AM
Updated: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 @ 1:11 AM
DAYTON — Dayton police are investigating a shooting in the road across from Wesleyan MetroPark, according to the report.
Police were dispatched to Wesleyan Road at Princeton Drive around 12:55 a.m. Tuesday.
The gunshot victim, a 29-year-old female, was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital, read the report.
The victim’s condition was not immediately available.
Police reportedly did not locate any shell casings, blood or signs of a fight at the scene.