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UPDATE: Man Pleads Not Guilty in Rape, Death of Ohio Girl

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

UPDATE 12/26/2013 2:25 PM

WOOSTER, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio man pleaded not guilty in the rape and strangulation of a 9-year-old girl found dead in a trash bin at the trailer park where they were neighbors.

A court-appointed attorney entered the pleas Thursday for Jerrod Metsker in Wayne County court in Wooster.

A grand jury had indicted the 24-year-old Metsker on charges of aggravated murder, kidnapping and rape.

Authorities say he was the last person seen with 9-year-old Reann Murphy at their trailer park in Smithville, southwest of Akron. A caller identifying himself as Metsker reported Reann missing in a 911 call.

Her body was found Dec. 15. Metsker was arrested later that day.

Authorities previously said the death penalty would be available as punishment if Metsker was convicted of murder.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


UPDATE 12/17/2013 11:00 AM

WOOSTER, Ohio (AP) - The disappearance of a 9-year-old girl later found strangled and dumped in a trash bin in northeast Ohio was reported in a 911 call by the man now charged with her murder.

A caller identifying himself as Jerrod Metsker said Reann Murphy was missing from their Smithville trailer park and people were searching for her late Saturday.

The caller identified the missing child as "a little girl, Reann" but didn't know her age. When asked to identify himself the caller mentions only that he had "a knock at my door."

The caller then gave the phone to the girl's stepfather.

Authorities say the 24-year-old Metsker was the last person seen with Reann at the trailer park where they lived in Wayne County southwest of Akron.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


WOOSTER, Ohio (AP) - Authorities in Ohio say an unemployed man accused of killing a 9-year-old neighbor had been building a snowman with the girl just a few hours before she was reported missing.

A sheriff's investigator says Jerrod Metsker was the last person seen with the girl at the trailer park where both lived.

Metsker is being held on $1 million bond following his arraignment Monday.

The 24-year-old was arrested Sunday, about 12 hours after deputies found Reann Murphy's body inside a trash bin at the trailer park.

Authorities described Metsker as a family friend and neighbor.

They say the little girl was playing in the snow with several other children but she was left alone with the suspect after the others went home.

Authorities haven't given a motive for the killing.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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