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Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 3:45 PM
TROY — Investigators believe they have witnesses who can place a husband at the scene where his wife was found dead in a car, Miami County Sheriff Dave Duchak said Tuesday.
Randy Freels faces a charge of one count of murder in the death of his wife, Samantha Freels, 52, who was found in a wrecked car with a gunshot wound Friday.
Bail for Randy Freels, 57, was set at $1.5 million Tuesday in Miami County Municipal Court. He pleaded not guilty.
Miami County Prosecutor Tony Kendell asked Judge Gary Nasal to set “a substantial cash bond as high as the court is willing to give. This is based on his conduct and the charge itself.”
Duchak said a check of available department records to 2010 did not show any sheriff’s office calls to the Freels’ residence.
One of the witnesses told investigators she stopped on Ohio 55 around 2:50 p.m. Jan. 12 to ask a man and woman in the road if they needed assistance, then heard “six to eight popping sounds” a short time later after pulling into her nearby driveway, according to a sheriff’s office report.
The witness said the woman “appeared nervous and the male did not make eye contact with her and did not speak,” according to the report. The witness, after viewing a photograph, said she believed the woman was Samantha Freels of Union Twp.
Emergency crews were called just after 3 p.m. Friday for a report of a car into a creek in the area of Ohio 55 and Elleman Road — near where the woman had encountered the couple earlier.
Investigators initially thought the driver, Samantha Freels, died because of the crash but later found she had a gunshot wound.
A sheriff’s investigator at the scene noticed a “fresh bullet hole” on the vehicle’s trunk lid.
Randy Freels was arrested Friday evening at the couple’s home on South Rangeline Road.
Duchak said Tuesday that the investigation continues after a search of a car driven by Samantha Freels, a truck also found near the crash scene and registered to Samantha Freels and the Rangeline Road, Ludlow Falls, residence.
The sheriff said numerous weapons were found in the search of the home, including long rifles and pistols. He did not have an exact number but said it would be “in excess of 40.”
“We have several witnesses we believe will place him at the scene,” Duchak said Tuesday.
Published: Thursday, May 24, 2018 @ 10:37 AM
Updated: Thursday, May 24, 2018 @ 11:10 AM
WARREN COUNTY — UPDATE @ 11 a.m.:
A man has been taken into custody without incident at the Franklin Twp. home.
U.S. Marshals and Warren County law enforcement are at a Franklin Twp. residence this morning for a person who reportedly is not coming out for warrant service, according to police scanner traffic.
At about 9:50 a.m. the Marshals were at a residence in the 3600 block of Wilson Farms Boulevard to serve a warrant for escape.
The person was reportedly hiding in the attic and not coming out, according to scanner traffic.
Published: Thursday, May 24, 2018 @ 10:30 AM
WEST CHESTER TWP. — West Chester Police have released additional photos of a suspect in a recent rifle theft from Cabela’s as well as thefts from a store in a neighboring township.
A man allegedly concealed a Savage model B22 .22 caliber rifle under his clothing and walked out of Cabela’s, 7250 Cabela Drive, on April 24, according to a police report.
West Chester Twp. police said it appeared the suspect may have been wearing a Houston Rockets basketball jersey under a jacket.
Police now have additional photos of a man and a vehicle they say may be connected to that theft and recent shoplifting from Walmart in Fairfield Twp.
Police say the man has a tattoo on his right forearm and appears to drive a late model black or dark blue Chevy Equinox with no front license plate.
Published: Thursday, May 24, 2018 @ 5:00 AM
— A man who allegedly walked into a Middletown Subway restaurant with a gun and chased employees out the back door, has been indicted for aggravated robbery and robbery in Georgia.
In March 2017, Deandre Yates, 21, of Cincinnati, allegedly entered the Subway restaurant on Verity Parkway with a gun to rob the business and employees.
The suspect fled after several employees ran out of the restaurant and called police.
Yates allegedly was part of “serial robberies” in Cincinnati and Georgia, according to Middletown Detective Kristi Hughes.
After Yates robbed the Middletown Subway, he committed another robbery of a Subway in Georgia two days later, according to Hughes.
He was wearing the same clothes in both robberies, she said.
During the robbery in Georgia, a Subway employee shot Yates in the stomach and he was transported to a local hospital, Hughes said.
The car that dropped off Yates at the hospital matched the description of the vehicle that he drove to the Middletown Subway, she said.
Yates was charged with the robberies after he had multiple surgeries, Hughes said.
Hughes said she believes Yates was part of an “organized group” that was committing robberies throughout the country.
An investigation revealed Yates had robbed a Waffle House in Hamilton County prior to the Subway robbery in Middletown, wearing the same clothes and holding a gun.
Hughes worked with Harrison Police Detective Rick Sak on finding the suspect, investigating the robberies and building a case.
Yates has been indicted in Hamilton County Common Pleas Criminal Court on counts of aggravated robbery and robbery. After he serves 18 months in Cobb County, Ga., he will be extradited back to Hamilton County, Hughes said.
Published: Wednesday, May 23, 2018 @ 6:44 PM
lebanon — Two 13-year-old Mason boys on Wednesday were placed on probation and ordered to write an apologies for making threats against their school in separate incidents in April.
In a third hearing Wednesday in Warren County Juvenile Court, Judge Joe Kirby released to a Clearcreek Twp. boy to his father. The student was charged with threatening to shoot up his school on May 15 with Nerf guns.
Over the past three months, Kirby has presided over 15 or more school threat cases.
On Wednesday, the Mason boys appeared in separate hearings where they admitted to charges before being sentenced.
One boy was accused of “circulating a warning of an impending crime, namely someone wanting to shoot students at the Mason Middle School, knowing the warning to be false” on April 8, according to charging documents.
The threat, posted on the district’s Schoology page, contained “a great deal of vulgarity” indicated the boy was “impersonating a classmate, and that there was no credible threat to school or student safety,” according to a message from the district.
The other boy admitted “murmuring” a threat to shoot his teacher after being reprimanded for listening to videos with headphones during class on April 12.
Both passed polygraphs, admitted to inducing panic and received suspended detention sentences.
Kirby was harder on the boy who used his friend’s computer identity to make the threat. The friend’s parents said he had been shaken by the experience.
“Unbelievable,” Kirby said. “It sounds to me like you’re a jerk.”
In the other case, lawyer Ed Perry said violent video games arm the children with words like Glock, the kind of gun his client said he would use on his teacher, although he admitted during the hearing he didn’t know much about that type of gun.
“I don’t think the children appreciate what they are talking about,” Perry said.