4 Episode results for "Sheriff Charlie Reader"
Episode 5- To Protect & Serve
"Your time for some real summer fund is here so ditched the boredom and hit up your local mini dealer because the many summer of dr event is happening. Now get a new mini cooper s countryman. All four starting at three sixty nine per month for thirty six month low mileage lease with two thousand nine hundred ninety nine due at signing visit many usa dot com slash east for details. That's many usa dot com slash. And see what. It's like to drive the most versatile. Many ever at the mini summer of dr event after a long time off summers back and whole foods market has the exceptional ingredients. You need to make the most of it that means air chilled animal welfare certified chicken sustainable while caught sockeye salmon. And have you seen those organic peaches epic so whether it's succulent pork. Ribs or a towering plant based burger in the backyard. Take the guardrails off and summer on at whole foods market. Welcome to the and massacre production of iheartradio and katie studios. We are here today. For the case of ohio versus charles reader case numbers. Twenty nine thousand nine hundred. Cr six eight The quarter now here from mr lean. I stayed here before you today to take accountability for my actions to accept responsibility for my conduct share of ohio. I should is me thing that i've worked for professionally and honorably for twenty. Five years was trip to me with nobody disappointing but my stuff. If i could go back and jaded i would a million times. This is not. Hawaii never ever did. I imagine myself on the victim side. This court group. That i've spent twenty five years of my life in this down in law enforcement. I am a good person. Make bad decisions and choices prayed. Quite mercy on me this is. The massacre returned. Pike county season two episode five to protect and serve. I'm gordon armstrong. A television producer. Kt studios with stephanie. Decker and jeff shane on the morning of april twenty. Second two thousand sixteen the pike county. Sheriff's office responded to calls of multiple homicides in what would soon be considered ohio's notorious mass murderer seven adults and one sixteen year. Old boy were found in four different locations along a country road in pike county. We know all of these victims. All members of the road in family shooting. Sift town of piped-in numb a lot of unanswered questions as to how this unfolded and who is responsible for them as news of the tragedy emerged. The nation. turn to the area's top law enforcement official for answers. Pike county sheriff charlie reader to give a brief update on what we are doing at this time. I have Deputies from my county and other counties that are keeping the scene secured. here's reporter jane's culture. He's the one updating the media. he's the one who's available. He's the one when you wanted to ask how things are going. He was the one that you call so he began. The face of the investigation early on this investigation is very large. One probably the largest in pike county than we've ever had been a part of this very tragic. I want everybody to be patient but understand that we are working around the clock twenty four hours a day but this is going to be a very lengthy process. Reporter engineer levy covered many of readers briefings during the course of the road and murder investigation. You know he was out in front of this standing next to the attorney general at the time doing press conferences with him and he often became very emotional and people. There were a lot of people in pike county who really really liked ten. You came in like thieves in the night and took eight. Life's some being children. We are getting closer. The family and the victims will have justice. One day charlie. Reader by all accounts is somebody who grew up in pike county. He did not come from a well to do family or anything like that. A lot of people out in pay county or poor. he worked for many years for the pike. County prosecutor rob john his investigator and at some point charlie reader was appointed the sheriff by the democratic party in pike county criminal defense attorney mike allen remembered readers two thousand sixteen landslide election. He got seventy five percent is opponent got twenty. Five percent is pretty unheard of in any kind of election so at one point he was pretty popular. Sheriff there were a lot of people in the community who felt that he did some good things at the sheriff's office when he first still felt like he. cleaning up crime in the streets southern ohio has very major drug problem with opioids in methamphetamine. Sentinel and all of it and a couple of members of the community claims that reader really was there for the family after one of their members died from a drug overdose and health. Plan a memorial tree in his honor so he was very approachable. Key was out and about in the community. Much more charlie. Reader printed himself as the people sheriff during the height of the road and murder investigation. Sheriff readers passionate pleas for justice earned him the trust of his community as a sheriff pike. County were at three hundred fifty six days into this investigation of got a message for the killers. We will find you. We will arrest you and you will be prosecuted. As this case niche forward. The spotlight grew brighter and brighter and that area. Because of this case and i think he enjoyed the spotlight to a degree. I think he had greater political aspirations as well. Here's producer chris graves speaking with investigative reporter. Jodi bar he covered the road. Murder case for fox news nineteen in cincinnati. What kind of power does a sheriff wheeled in a community like fight county. He was the closest to the people. Pike county and you see that with a lot of elected officials in more rural areas that you know the sheriff is literally the top dog in the county. He is the face of law enforcement. He controls what happens with law enforcement. Where patrols happen and he so as far as an elected official as far as a person holding. Power your sheriff in these areas demand. Something like that. Go to someone's head you've worked in law enforcement yourself for quite a while. Oh yeah you see it. a lot. Police chief sore sheriffs or somebody who's recently promoted to a supervisory position. I mean thank goodness. That doesn't happen to a lot of them but some of them the dodge now whether that happened here not i don't know but yeah that that very much could happen as the rodman moved into. Its second year. Some disquieting rumours about sheriff reader began to surface as we began to spend more time out there. We started hearing the rumblings that arison corruption out there. We had heard rumors about him. Intimidating people and possibly taking money from people who were in the drug dealing business. I know i for one was told by some of my law enforcement sources in the cincinnati area. Hey you need to be careful around him. He sturdy and these were just people that were my sources who said you know. Look i just want you to be aware. Be careful was because they were afraid. It didn't trust him. They did not trust. Charlie reader a rumor that he was Sexually harassing some female employees when he worked at the ross county at juvenile detention center records from his personnel file said that He wasn't the right fit and there were too many questions yet. A lawsuit in small claims court in nineteen ninety five and gala police for not paying a debt and there was a warrant issued for him but he ended up paying it. So i mean there were some things out there. There appears to be two sides of charlie reader. One that you know the public sees and they saw these nationally. Televised broadcasts press conferences. Where readers very emotional talking about these rodent murderers very early on and then there is something you see in charlie reader aware when readers challenge you another side of raider so he's he's got a very public face in a very private face. Then oh yeah. Investigators recently towed vehicles. That had been part of the homes where eight members of the rodent family were found. Shot to death in pike county ohio last month before mobile homes themselves where the bodies were found will be removed from the scene to be stored at a location in nearby waverley again right outside investigator reporter jodi bar live in pike county. While i was in pike county i started seeing things that i had to question what we found at that evidence warehouse where the trailers vehicles the equipment that all belong to the rodents was shared office and bci took that so we found problems with the security of that evidence and the security of that warehouse. I'm not an attorney. I've never prosecuted the case. I've never collected evidence for what i do know. Is that evidence that is collected has to be secured. I've seen prosecutions lost in courtrooms in the states. I've covered because someone's fail to secure one piece of evidence. And of course charlie reader was so central to what we were looking at. Is the man in charge that we had to go find him. We scheduled the interview and we sat down. And we had this conversation with charlie reader. And i wanna say lasted maybe forty five minutes to an hour and again back to watching the two sides of cheerleader. You had the emotional charlie reader early on in the interview where he's talking about. You know the roads and you know what this is done to pike county and then i broke out and ipad and on that i've had. I had visuals the images that i taken from that warehouse at the gate standing while another game cheered with a piece of thin wire days and nights of no law enforcement at that where how and i think reader new during the middle of that interview that this was not going to look good when we recorded it that will we found there looked terrible and it reflected on the job he did. So i saw charlie reader change but he changed into defensive at red face but rear finally admitted that they did not have a deputy posted at that warehouse watching that evidence. Twenty four seven. What sheriff reader did next destruct seasoned reporter. Jodi bars troubling. Here's dodi's firsthand. Account of the interaction so the interview ins and photographer and i are tearing down the equipment and trump walks out. The front door of the old sheriff's office in waverly were standing on the porch of that sheriff's office in reader. Wants to make a deal and he says if we'll just hold off on the report of the evidence where how and wait until they can return property to the family that reader would lead us in full access to him and turley readers story of the first one hundred hours after the road murders and i just told him no. We don't make deals several months. After that report aired. I got messages from people in pike. County what after the other telling me that there was a raid underway at this road. Evidence warehouse in waverly well. I dropped everything i was doing at. Cincinnati intro the two hours east to this warehouse. In when i got there there. They were shared. Charlie reader deputies. The pike county sheriff's office carrying things in and out of this warehouse. And you know. I'm standing there wondering what is going on here. This shouldn't be happening unless there's something happened. We don't know about involving the rodent murders. This was a great public concern but that night reader would not return my phone calls. It was very contentious trying to get information out of pike county out of the sheriff's office at a point but after that we were never able to access him again. Despite scharf readers apparent mishandling of aspects of the road murder investigation authorities were able to put the wagner family behind bars and twenty eighteen however just weeks later area journalists got word that a different investigation unrelated to the road and murderers was underway. One that placed sheriff charlie reader on the other side of the law. The state auditor's office released documents to all of us. That stated an anonymous tip had come in to the auditor's office in which someone stated that everyone was scared to death of reader that he was basically a monster and investigators need to look into a safe that was in his office. That contained money seized in drug deals and it also said something about him possibly gambling in. Is this really wore on. The investigation continued and then word started spreading around pike. County really took. What was going on with charlie reader to a whole new level in june of two thousand nineteen. A grand jury brought forth sixteen charges. Against sheriff charlie reader as a result. He was suspended from office bringing his three year. Tenure sheriff to a close. The indictment laid out details of the investigation and his crimes. Reader originally faced several counts of theft in office which is a felony on aisle as well as tampering with evidence which is also a felony in ohio. So what happens is charlie. Reader has a pretty sizable amount of money. He's taken from alleged drug dealers in pike county. Sheriff every law enforcement agency and the entire country much less than including ohio is allowed to seize money from suspects if they think that that money or those goods are being used in the commission of a crime money that was seized it in drug cases to supposed to be secured in a safe or in a bank account or something and you can use them for education purposes for the sheriff's department You can contribute to appropriate charities but in these cases at least on two occasions the allegation was that he took cash and converted it to his his own use so the state auditor does their annual review of the books on the first passed the state auditors. Find some money missing out of the seizure account and then they go back to reader and apparently he tries to put it back by the that leads to the state auditor's office then diving into getting warrants and diving into his personal finance records. They find multiple expenses in multiple trips to casinos. Both in the area and out of state and tens of thousands of dollars spent a casinos impossible. Depth records are pretty clear that showed some pretty big losses at the race track and also They found that he would through more than twenty eight hundred dollars from Machines that the atlantic casino so it was pretty clear it was from gambling. Some of the other allegations were that a lotta times in drug cases cars are forfeited and in a couple of charges The allegations are that at the auction. he rigged it and engineered at that either era frank friends of his would get those vehicles and then turn around and sell them so they were very serious charges on september. Twenty four th twenty twenty sheriff. Charles reader pled guilty to five charges filed against him. They included two counts of theft in office two counts of tampering with evidence and one count of conflict of interest. A few months later he appeared in court for sentencing. It was the day that net levy would not soon forget. What was the mood like through all of this. I couldn't believe it when i got out there that morning. The street was blocked off. There were members of the us. Marshals service air the us marshals service bomb squad. Was there it. There were sheriff's deputies. There i mean this was quite the operation. There were snipers orioles. Actually have a photograph of a sniper on a roof and there had been some rumblings online apparently people encouraging people to show up at the courthouse to protest the sentence. There was some fear that people who were really hard core supporters of his might show up and try to do something dangerous in order to keep him from being sentenced to prison. It was crazy it had never even been like that for a wagner court hearing. We're going to take a quick break here. We'll be back in a moment last year. There was a victim of identity theft. Every three seconds a criminal could be spending your money applying for loans in your name damaging your credit or even selling your personal info on the dark web. Unfortunately you could miss certain threats to your identity by just checking bank statements and monitoring your credit the solution lifelock identity theft protection. Lifelock sees certain threats. You could miss if you're only monitoring your credit and alert shoe if they find something that could be suspicious plus if you become a victim of identity theft a. us based identity restoration. Specialist will work to fix it. No one can prevent all identity theft or monitor all transactions at all businesses but lifelock by norton can help protect. Your personal information joined now this week. Only it's the better than black friday sale. Save up to thirty five percent off your first year at lifelock dot com slash hurry. The sale is seven days only to lifelock dot com slash piped in to save up to thirty five percent. Don't wait offer ends june thirteenth. Shell brothers is now building new homes and ten unique communities across tax friendly coastal delaware with twelve models available to virtually tour you can discover shaw brothers unique carbon peel and sensational floor plans from the comfort of your own home. Spring is the perfect time to start planning your dream home to start exploring everything shell brothers has to offer visit us today at shaw brothers dot com models currently open by appointment only inside the courtroom. The mood was much different today. For sentencing in the case of ohio versus charles reader. He's number is twenty nine thousand nine hundred cr. Six eight reader had his sentencing in front of a visiting judge patricia. Cosgrove who had actually sentenced three previous ohio shares on corruption charges. Now we're five charges and all of those could have gotten him more than twelve years in prison. You see charlier eater. He's sitting court sitting beside his defense attorney at a table to the left. And at the table to the right the prosecutor who went to the grand jury got the indictments against raider. Who got the guilty plea from raider butts before and you see these two tables in opposition to one another and the judges in the center. There's a empty podium in the center and then you see people walk up to that podium. And they start telling these stories of the good deeds charter reader. Did in certain instances around that county. He went through one of the most horrendous crimes ever committed in our counties to my memory what he went through. I can't take the night. he went sleepless. What is family went through what had done to his health. But i believe in his heart. Charlie reader is a good man. Has charlie made mistakes. Yes ma'am he probably has. But in the bible it says eager without sin cast the first. I could though many rocks at resolved made mistakes to one fact. I know charlie was to count on when you need them and would vote for him today. Houston shortsighted standing. God is my witness after these people have said what they said you see reader. Walk up to the podium. Now hanson misdemeanor. He's instantly emotional. He's in tears. And he's asking the judge for mercy to be lenient with him and sentencing. This is where he is laying it all out and asking. The state of ohio for mercy said bad light only sheriff. I only ask that their families. The community in my family was here today for him from the undue stress. Like those. I have an i l. prayed that work will fight mercy on me the same that i have. I feel that i have betrayed. Just play the trust of. I had with my staff the community. Please send me to prison. I have roamed. But i'm not. I still have a lot of good. Lifted during the proceedings. Details of readers crimes where luminated would note that the defendant was laughing county. Sheriff who committed these crimes is position is county sheriff Used his position to obtain control over evans bags and then use that control to remove the fines and use them for his own benefit. The majority of the funds involved were removed from the four evidence. Bags cut open by defendant. A fourteen thousand seven hundred. Seventy five dollars was removed fryer to defend in his attorney turning those bags over to investigators for the author states office the different currency new cases uncirculated bills was were put into the currency bags so that restoration would have been taken care of that point. Additionally there's a total four thousand eight hundred fifty dollars outstanding three thousand five hundred from the purchase of the nissan versa. Which was the profit made by the sheriff on that action. Three hundred fifty dollars the purchase of people who purchased the chevy silverado. In one thousand dollars seats never made it into the ovens so judge. Patricia kaas grows. She has a reputation for being very tough on sheriffs in in ohio who have been engaged in corruption and she is no nonsense and she questioned reader from the bench. During the judges questioning. Sheriff reader did his best to explain his more motivation behind his actions. Why did you cut open these evidence envelopes and take the money out and some cases you put back although newer caught because the envelopes had been unsealed in seal again improperly end. The denominations did not match what was taken at the crime scene from those individuals. I guess why did you take the money. I took the money in mind you. This does not excuse the from drug dealers that took it from parents. Very poor people in this camp that money regardless of what the and what the media has claimed in the past years of a gambling problem and that money being used for gambling was used when there was a tree planted in the name of the shelton boy. It's at the in terms of western high school to the left. As soon as you pull in. Nobody can pay for that treat. Nobody offered to pay for that tree. A drug door did when schools had cheerleading or peewee. That had car washes and such. I would have our cruisers taken down there. My men and women did not make good money so some of them would give them two dollars five dollars. I took money from that. And i provided it to those people in psi the presents the gatien the psi officer. Notes that there's no documentation that you use it for those things. I did not document. He didn't produce any receipts to back. These claims up. And we're still stood process by which those are tracked and you have to produce An accounting of all of that money so he claimed that he was essentially a robin hood. The judge certainly didn't believe it but then the judge started asking him questions about gambling. There were a couple of times judge cosgrove all the economy and she. She sounded very very skeptical. Let's stop here for another quick break. We'll be back in a moment. The greatest diamonds in the world of found at nervous before you pop the question visit movers. Diamond importers with a huge selection of quality diamonds at fair prices moves. Diamond is the region's first choice. At mervyn's you'll receive a free diamond education and no pressure to buy diamonds. Say you know value. Great diamonds and fabulous prices. It's the way that's why most was honored by washington post as best place to buy a diamond check. Our views at moves diamonds dot com again. That's mirvish diamonds dot com in the land of diamonds. Mervyn king mcqueen with a gorgeous mervyn diamond before you go down on one knee visit movers. Diamond importers with a huge selection of high quality diamonds at fair prices. Movers diamond is washington's. First choice at us you'll receive a free diamond education and no pressure to buy diamonds. Make a statement. They say you know value nine out of ten brides choose moves. The tenth is still speech us. Check out of us at movers. Diamonds dot com again. That's mervyn's diamonds dot com. Did you lose three thousand dollars. Gambling at this downs received between june. Two thousand seventeen in september two thousand and seventeen. Yes not by myself. They have cards an of course again. You're on our guilty to this but they have carte that you put in a machine. I can have a card in my name. And i can have a card in my name that my wife is so i could be at one machine and she can be at the other and the money that she spends the money that i spend. They count on the same card and calculate the money as one obviously doesn't answer the question where the money in the checking account come from. Okay also yes you late june. Two thousand seventeen. You took a trip to reno nevada for the sheriff's conference and then you withdrew twenty eight hundred dollars an atm. This state believes that some of the gambling talking life go over almost six thousand dollars in a couple a months that you are asked expended on gambling that point we were making almost eleven thousand dollars a month and that again was from my checking account where it should show miodrag deposits my wife rex deposits and that. It came remark evid cards where i retrieve that money darn came from debit cards. The question is worded the money. Come when to check in. That's i guess. That's that's where that's where. The media reported that. I had marital problems because it came from our joint bank account. My wife made very good money at the time. Then i took that money and that's all the questions important. Has she really let him have it. She took no grief from him whatsoever. Be underestimated the damage. You have caused to the citizens of pike county to launch forcement. Yup face the same sort of stresses you do they all home at night They get up in the morning. They don't know if they're going to come home. The sacrifices that these men and women. And i think he made a mockery of i could have imposed a much greater sentence that i have as i said i've taken into consideration. Some of the mitigating factors but punishment is appropriate to sentence you to i consider the minimum power to sentence you to anything Less than three years in prison would demean the seriousness of the offense and not adequately protect society for future criminal conduct by yourself an honest the judge handed him three years in reader walked out of that courtroom and into jail sale to pay for throwing away. His career embarrassing himself and air thing is family she. He became a victim of his own power. You said a sheriff in the county lake. That is top dog right. Maybe he started feeling. He was above the law. The only fifteen years of doing this job looking at people like charlie reader in multiple states with multiple different schemes of crimes being committed. There's a trend with just shares. In general where a lot of them get in trouble is it because they feel so powerful and touchable. I don't know but man you look at it in the final analysis. What we have here is a guy in pike county who had the county by a streaming who had the trust of people who live in that county. So is it power. I don't know all that. I know at this point. Is you had an elected official. Who makes a pretty bad decisions and he's paying for it now. Have you gotten a sense. What the implications might be for the wagner cases that readers now going to jail there early facing down prison for whether or not that had anything to do with the actual investigation. No one knows by. If i'm a defense attorney all i gotta do is throw it that smokescreen at some point and see what happens and if i'm a prosecutor i'm thinking okay. I need to have a contingency plan to how to answer this. If you're the defense. I'm assuming you will bring it up in court. You'll you'll point to that if the judge allows it and say you know. How can you trust investigation. This man was out there on the scene that morning. I think it makes people in the county question. What's really going on there. While we wait to see how sheriff readers conviction will impact the wagner trials. One journalist continues to grapple with the legacy of the road and murders story. That forever changed her life more than five years ago. More on that next time for more information on the case and relevant photos. Follow us on instagram. At kt underscore studios the pike and massacre. Returned by county is executive produced by stephanie. Lie decker and me. Courtney armstrong editing and sound design by executive producer. Jared aston additional producing jeff. Shane andrew becker and chris graves. The pike massacre returned to pay cownie a production of iheartradio. Kt studios for more podcasts. From iheartradio visit the iheartradio app apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to your favorite shows if you're a small business owner growing your business what it's all about that is if you have the space to do it. Cube smart self storage has the solution with a variety of storage unit sizes helpful online resources and easy to access facilities. Keep smart self. Storage provides a self storage experience that puts the focus on you. Because you and your business matter most and help you grow cube. Smart is offering up to twenty five percent off your monthly rent. Say goodbye to crowded inventory and hello to your business. Success story with qb smart self storage visit cube smart dot com for more information in the land of diamonds. Mervyn king maker queen with a gorgeous movers. Diamond before you go down on one knee visit. Movers diamond importers with a huge selection of high quality diamonds. At fair prices diamond is washington's first choice at mervyn's you'll receive a free diamond education and no pressure to buy a dime. Make a statement. They say you know value nine out of ten brides choose movies. The tenth is still speeches. Check out of us at moves. Diamonds dot com again. that's movers. Diamonds dot com.
Episode 10- Hopper Road
"Management concepts in powers federal leaders every career level there six leadership programs include courses aligned to opium cues and fundamental competencies taught by experts with federal experienced management. Concepts programs can live instructions with experiential learning personal assessment of coaching an online collaboration to deliver the real world skills you need over ten thousand government workers a year twos management concepts for their leadership development needs learn why and management concepts dot com classes forming. Now okay so you got to check out at home. Since i've heard the deals are pretty amazing. Home sense has incredible prices on nice brand name stuff furniture rugs lights decor endless so for every room. It's different every time you go kind of like a treasure hunt. You never know what you'll find like a reclaimed wood table. Okay okay. you're right. I definitely have to check out home sense. Tell you can take a virtual tour online and get directions to the store at home. Sense dot com welcome to the pike and massacre returned to county a production of iheartradio and katie studios. You've got all these scenarios in your head. I think this may have happened her navy. They did this. Every family of a murder victim does that you lay in bed and you think what happened. Why did they do this to did this. There's someone out there roaming around that killed two people that you could be standing beside in the grocery store and scary is the pike massacre returned to pay county season two episode ten hopper road. I'm courtney armstrong a television producer at katy studios stephanie. Lie decker and jeff shane over the course of producing this series. We've spoken to several members of the road and family because of a gag order and impending trials for the wagner family. They have been unable to go on record but earlier this year. One member of the family told us that her friend a pie. Tin resident named angie montgomery wanted to share a story about her own family and a loss they had suffered some years back. Coincidentally that same week a listener wrote in asking about that exact case so for this bonus episode as gear up to the season finale. Next week we decided to look into it. Angie perhaps more than most people can empathize with with. The roads are going through when we spoke to angie. She had just heard about jake. Wagner's plea deal in the road murder case. This news hit angie especially hard. She told us that she immediately reached out to her. Rodent family friend. I remember texting her just telling her. I was sorry that had to hurt so bad knowing that you sat down to eat christmas dinner with these people. You went to church with these people. So i can't imagine finding that out. Angie reflected back on the day. The bodies of eight members of the rodent family were found. I think we lost our innocence. That day we lost our wholesomeness our trust. We lost everything it was like you weren't a days this is happening. Your like where am i living. What's going on here. it's crazy angie's bewilderment is no doubt informed by her own tragic loss ten years before the road and family was gunned down. Her cousin curtis francis and his fiancee. Jennifer forget were also murdered and pike county. Angie spoke with producer. Chris graves about it. I know this probably hard. But can you describe for me. What happened to curtis jennifer on december. Ninth two thousand. Six curtis at his friend's house visiting he had been drinking that day and having a little bit of fun and jennie had came down and told him that he needed to get home and he laughed about ten thirty that night and went home and his mother talked to him before he went to bed. Belt midnight. I think in jenny had talked to a friend. I think about eleven thirty so they were going to bed and the next day. Nine one one call came in that genie's mother had found curtis jenny they had been shot in their bed was horrible. Curtis jenny were good. People you heartbreaking. It was just a shop. it's unsolved correct. Yes fourteen years unthought. It's a roller coaster. You go down every day you go up and down you know. Today's going to be the day something's going to happen and nothing just before their murders thirty four year old curtis francis and thirty year old jennifer. Forget where recently engaged. Couple living in piped-in ohio cousin. Curtis can you tell me a little bit about him and what he was like. Curtis was a good guy. He had a good heart. What help anybody he was. A hard worker loved family. He was very loyal and he was a a very good person. He was a little bit older than and we would see each other. You know when we were younger but we really hung out or when we got older teenagers in her early twenties. During that time we were pretty close. He was like more like a big brother to me. What about jennifer his fiancee. I like to call her a caretaker. She liked to take care of everybody. She loved in a move. She liked to fish. She was a good soul shannon goodhart. And what were they like together. They were a cute couple. They were neighbors. Always joke around. Curtis like joke a lot and laughing and they were just a normal couple. I guess hard working couple their murders just before christmas in two thousand six. Where a shock to everyone. Who knew the couple. Curtis jennifer were shot while they lie asleep in their home. On harper road in piped-in it was later determined that the bullets that killed them were fired from a lever action. Rifle i assume you guys try to work with the police on this right. How did that work at first. The family as being told jeannie and curtis's family. You know we don't know who did this. We don't know what's gonna win. You know law enforcement you. Trust them if they tell you. Hey we're working on this we're gonna get him. You know you gotta be patient which Everybody understands that you can't solve a murder in a day. Sometimes it takes a long time but after fourteen years of being told going from working on it to not contacting at all too well. We've we've went as far as we can go with this case. There's not really anything else we can do unless someone confesses or you know something. Drastic happens that hurts. I think there was one article on it when it happened a few days after it happened in the local paper and and a few other media outlets picked it up and did a couple of articles but after that there was nothing. You feel. like you're never gonna get justice and then you worry about. Hey you know. There's someone on the loose that could do this to other families. And then that turns into kind of aggravation. Why isn't anything being done. Why isn't this case important. Why the mafia important but authorities had no answers eventually the case that became known as the hopper road double when cold then twenty twelve there was suddenly some movement as part of his ohio unsolved homicides initiative then-attorney attorney general mike dewine revived the case urging anyone. With information to come forward he caught wind and he went on channel ten news station on columbus and Beach urge road. Murders talked about it. They had a deputy from the sheriff's department. Talk about acting tips. You know anybody. If they have any information we believe there are person or people out there who have information who would enable us to solve the case me had gotten a new sheriff and he wanted to reopen the case. And try to get some help with it. How did that make you feel feel like someone was actually paying attention. You guys. yeah we were excited. Do you know this is it. Somebody's gonna do something. We've got the attorney general on this and something's going to happen. Dave followed a few leads and a few tips but nothing came about in two thousand fourteen. The investigation was handed back over to the pike. County sheriff's office and it just went cold again. Two years later in two thousand sixteen jody bar than an investigative reporter at fox nineteen in cincinnati received an email from a woman named paula horn. Saying something to the effect of my son who was wrongfully convicted of murder. It and she says. I've got information and another cold case. So of course that got my attention. I go and meet with this woman and what ended up happening. Was paula horns son. Eric was convicted of a separate murder in pike county. A few years before curtain ginny were murdered. He was convicted of murdering paul. Show shouting kilby. He was convicted of that. But i'll a horn was on a mission to have her son. Eric horn set free from prison. Paula horn was convince. Her son did not do the murder so she pulls this huge box out of a closet and it stacked full of papers and files. Paul horn head collected massive amount of documentation tied to her sons murder conviction. But it was documents within this archive pertaining to a different case. That caught. jody's. I the murderers of curtis francis and jennifer get on hopper road as it turns out. Erakor new curtis francis and was with him hours before he was murdered in this box of documents. That paul a horn had or email communications between the prosecution. It eric horns zone attorney. In their plotting hell eric corned would plead guilty in one case in the state would use him as a witness in the double murder on harper road. This was essentially. Eric hordes saying i will trade information about this double murder for a plea deal in this paul show murder so eric. Corn had written out a statement. It's called a proper where he's getting. Investigators information in one case to essentially help him in another. Erica horn gave this to investigators somewhere around september of two thousand and eight so over the next month. Or so eric. From prison writes his mother a letter and he tells her about what happened the night that kurt francis and jennifer forget when murdered according to his letter. Eric corn told authorities that he was at a house on winn road. Piked in ninth two thousand and six that night. A group including curtis francis had gathered at the home for a party horn claimed that he left the wind road home at around ten thirty pm and never saw curtis francis again but horn said that just weeks later he ran into a man who was at the party. The man told horn that he was forced to go to curtis and jennifer's house that night his housemate who shot the couple over money dispute. Eric corn never admits to having direct involvement with the actual murders and sales. But eric horn wrote in that letter that there was a lever action rifle that hung on the wall of the house home on winn road in that after these murders happened. That gun was no longer on the wall. We're going to take a quick break here. We'll be back in a moment. It's crazy how much we have to pay for outdated impersonal healthcare and even crazier that we all just accept it. It's time to face facts. Healthcare is backwards. Luckily there's forward a new approach to primary care that surprisingly personal and refreshingly straightforward never makes you feel like just another patient backed by top rated doctors and the latest tech forward gives you access to personalized care whenever you need it using in-depth genetic analysis in realtime bloodwork forward top top-rated doctors provide you with in-depth insights to better understand your genetics mental and physical health. They then create custom easy to understand plans to help guide you to achieving long-term health with forward you get unlimited in person visits with your doctor and access to care anytime via the forward app offer. One flat monthly fee. It's time to stop accepting backwards. Healthcare and start moving. Your health forward visit go forward dot com today to learn more. That's go forward dot com. Remember the saying if you love something. Set it free. If it doesn't come back it was never yours to begin with well when it comes to identity the folks at lifelock totally disagree all those nights working overtime saving up all that money paying off all that debt and now some identity thief wants to try and set it free. They say that's crazy. Talk and we agree. That's why lifelock by norton helps monitor your info and alert you to potential identity threats. And if you do become a victim a dedicated. Us based specialists will be there to help fix it. No one can prevent all identity theft or monitor all transactions at all businesses but when identity thieves. Try to take what she wears. You don't have to take it lying down. Save up to twenty five percent off your first year by going to lifelock dot com slash piped-in. That's lifelock dot com slash payton for twenty five percent off The files collected by paula horn contained not only air corn statements but accounts from other witnesses about the native curtis francis and jennifer gets murders. What i was reading on them was unbelievable. There were witness statements out of an investigative files in the pike. County sheriff's office contained in this box of records to this box records contained every document. That somebody like me could only dream of having when you start investigating a murder. That's ten years old at that point in time and what she had in her possession documents that ultimately provided a whole lot of answers for jimmy's family. We win every shred of paper in this case file. I made sure. I understood who every person was who these players are how they were connected. Next job was then to go talk to the victims families. So i went to judy conley. Who is kurt francis. His mother jody bar revealed some of the other statements taken by police in their investigation into kurt. Jennifer's murderer to the family. These accounts however seemed to contradict what era corn initially told authorities. Here again. angie. Montgomery one statement is from a gentleman whose house courtesy was at the night that he got murdered. He stated that his brother and his friend eric corn had left after curtis had left about ten thirty or eleven and took a rifle off the wall and went in killed curtis jenny and that they came back with bloody clothes in the shower took a shower. Got the blood. Often them took their clothes out in the yard and put them in a black trash bag in burnt them all at the command of his mother. Because apparently curtis owed the mother's fiance. Three hundred dollars is what i was told. And then there's another statement and they told the same story that they took a rifle off. The wall came back. Bloody took a shower bird. Close eric. corn denies any and all involvement in curtis and jennifer's murders. Jody bar knew that the information he had could help track down curtis and jennifer killers. But there was one problem. Jody couldn't get any more information from investigators. We can't pull the records in this case. They're all under seal. This is still considered although it's cold it's attending open investigation regardless of whether investigators are actively working or not. These are not records. You can get a hold of under the open records. Act so what you have at that point. The only thing you have are the witnesses and family members who may have been in contact or who may have remembered something from from back when this began. But i knew there was something here. I just had to get somebody from the family to work with us to help us. Then all the sudden this guy was huge. Winter jacket walks in from the backyard and greasy. He's been working on a car. And it's paul francis. His brother is kerr trances and judy. Introduces us and i tell him why why i am there. In his whole demeanor changed he looked angry. And i'm thinking okay. This is this going to be one of those where i get hauled out of the by collar belt loops and paul tells me is. Let's get your car. i've got something to show you. So get the car and we drive from his home over to win road and he walks me out to the edge of the property and he says this is a well and then he starts telling me the story about the story that this well told that he just happened to find. Paul jody that in july of twenty sixteen. He was doing the plumbing job at the same house on winn road that curtis was last seen at the night of his murder in two thousand six. By this point the previous owners had moved out doing plumbing work. So he sees a waterline running outside with an electrical wire running out alongside the pipe. So he's trying to pull this water lineup and it gets to a point where he he can't pull it up out of the ground any longer so then starts pulling this electrical wire and it snakes across the yard and it goes down a hill under a pile of junk in the yard as you described it and he digs down in. He finds this well. Shaft paul told me in the back of his mind and suspicion was that this could hold some sort of answer to his brothers. It sister-in-law's murder. You told me. He had a gut feeling about it. So paul francis called the pike county sheriff's office into investigate by two thousand sixteen. The department was headed up by charlie reader who as we know would later be jailed on charges related to corruption in office at the moment when an twenty six. What were you guys feelings about. Charlie reader were you hopeful. Yeah you're hopeful with every new. Sheriff he also had his hands full because the road and massacre had just happened. We knew that resources were probably stretched. But we also thought the bci the fbi. They're already down here in our county that gave us a little bit of hope of maybe The sheriff will say something and and pick up on this too. We were very hopeful that he would do something and something would happen. So the sheriff. Charlie reader paid a local plumbing company to run on plumbers camera down the well they were able to capture images of a handgun ant then this lever action rifle been that is very similar to the gun that air corn described in his two thousand eight letter that he sent his mom from prison. Let's stop here for another quick break. We'll be back in a moment. Okay so i gotta tell you about shopping at home sense. Oh yeah. I need to check that out. Is it good. It's better than good. trust me. it's a whole new way to shop. Maybe even life changing seriously. Oh yeah see. Home sense is part of the homegoods family. So you know going in that everything will be less than you expect to pay. I love that. And here's the best part. Home sense is never the same store twice. They put out new items all week long. So there's always something new every visits kind of like a treasure hunt the other day. I've found zebra print accenture. I could use a new chair. Home has stuff to plus every room in your house. There's so much to choose from furniture rugs lights hall decor so many throw pillows while art and bulls. Okay you got me. I've got a check out home sense. You can take a virtual tour online and to get directions to the store at home. Sense dot com o. And when you go yeah take me with you deal like most people. I barely have time to get everything done. Let alone make a healthy indecent dinner for my family every night. Luckily i found hellofresh. This is not your average meal delivery. Kid hellofresh cuts out stressful meal planning and grocery store trips so you can enjoy cooking and get dinner on the table in just about thirty minutes or less with hellofresh. Making meals with my entire family is a total joy and our hands down favorite recipe is the white cheddar wonder burgers crispy fries on the side. You can enjoy a wide variety of easy delicious options for all three meals a day. Plus every snack special treat inbetween within the hellofresh market. And you can even customize your order on the app in minutes so if i feel like steak instead of chicken i can quickly and easily adjust delivery preferences. Don't take my word for it. Try it yourself go to hellofresh dot com slash in fourteen and use the code piked in fourteen for up to fourteen. Free meals. Plus free shipping. That's hellofresh dot com slash and fourteen and use code piked in fourteen for up to fourteen free meals. Plus free shipping hellofresh. America's number one meal kit a authorities also found burnt clothing a detail relaid in eric corn statement. This could have been the break in the case the only physical evidence that we know of was down a well shaft and the sheriff's office just feet away for being able to get their hands on it baggage process if potentially prosecute somebody in the hopper road double-murder so then they were faced with the task of. How do we get these guns out of this. Well it's it's an eight inch pipe. You know that goes down into a well so they tried with a magnet. I was told and when that failed. They called in a fire truck. The idea was used the fire. Hose to fill the well with water which wouldn't turn live the guns back up to the surface authorities to retrieve but things did not go as expected. Nate place the fire hose and the pipe and turned the water on it. Blew the bottom of the well out and knocked like an eighty foot pole in allow. Took the guns with yourself. This ultimately ends up getting a welder out there. The welder wells a plate over top of this well. And that's where it's at july two thousand sixteen and here. We are years later. The likelihood that it's ever recovered. It's not looking very good right now. How did that feel horrible. Muscial and don't horrible anger. You know this is that was probably the biggest break will ever getting in this case ever. Despite potential evidence being lost jodi buyer pressed on with his investigation in two thousand seventeen. He went forward with a series of reports on the hopper double murder case the pike county sheriff at the time charlie reader when i was looking into this case me that he developed a cold case unit within a sheriff's office and he had some season law enforcement officials investigators criminal profiler 's on this team and they were looking into the hopper road cold case. So i got an interview with those four men. And i wanted to know more about the well. I wanted to him about this evidence in the bottom of this. Well i wanted to know a named all the names that were contained in these witness statements had all four members of this cold case unit sitting in front of me interview inside the sheriff's office in all i got from this cold case. Unit was no comment. Every question was no comment. Have you been able to develop any type of motive Profile of the suspects no comment. So you know we were. At the end of the road jody's reporting on curtis and jennifer's murder also received some pushback from the pike county community do to his interactions with sheriff charlie reader at the time the people in pike county that scene jody's airing of the hopper room murders had a different perspective on mr bar because of the investigation. He did at the road warehouse. With mr reader. Mr reader had got on facebook in had a huge rant aimed at mr bar and i like to say they drink mr readers. Kool-aid people were saying. This guy's just down here to make the pike county sheriff's office in charlie reader look horrible and so i had a lot of people message unique saying i can't believe that your family would let that guy do a report on this case. And he's just a troublemaker. He isn't even from around here. And i would always buy back and say at least he cares. You know he's the only one that cares. He jody. I mean as with all my heart and i hope i can get it out without crying. It's he really does care about my family. He is in constant contact with me. He has helped me. He has listened to me cry. He's just it's aggravated as we are. He's a very caring person in he and he was he the gods. Jody bars reporting helped raise awareness about curtis and jennifer's murders. The police were seemingly unable to make any progress still today. No one's been arrested. Kirk james family have no more answers today than they had. When we rolled out of pike county for the last time and aired the the final broadcast into this case from your extensive investigation seems as though investigators know what might have happened to curtis and jennifer and who may have done it. Why do you think there has been an arrest. That's my question. I don't know why there hasn't been an arrest. I don't know the investigators just didn't have enough. I don't know what else was needed to finish investigation. You've got people in these statements telling stories that you fill out what happened when you know the people who were adelphi in these statements as having gone to this murder seeing committed these crimes. It came back home. So i don't know why. Or what or where. Investigators art at this point in time. This is where fifteen years down the road. No arrests so as far as families concern and i talked to them regularly still today i mean they they feel like this is a miscarriage of not even justice. They didn't get that far. It's just an incomplete investigation. You just hope one day you'll be able to finish the story because at this point two people are dead in. It appears that whoever did this is you know gotten away with murder but that won't be the case fangio. Montgomerie has anything to do with it. You're still on this mission to get answers to get justice and also to make sure that it doesn't happen to another family right. I got my kids up. Were they were a little bit. I had a little bit of time on my hands. So i started going full force with getting hopper case out into the public. Speaking i went to the prosecutor spoke with him a few times. I went to the sheriff's we had an interim sheriff. When mr reader got suspended we're told just helps coming and it never does and i noticed that it's always when i get really rowdy. Squeaky wheel gets the most grief. When i start squeaking. I'll get a phone call. Hey just hang on. I'm going to figure out and nothing happens in. We're tired of it. That's like the most emotional about is just feeling like nobody cares. And i can't imagine what curtains anyth- mom their mothers feel like. That's another thing that puts the fire under by ass. It's never it's not going to bring them back. You'll always have a hole in your heart from that. But i would love to see someone get arrested for curtis in jennifer's murder and get prosecuted and that we get justice more information and the case relevant photos. Follow us on instagram at. Kt underscores studios next week will be bringing you the season finale where full panel of contributors will answer listener questions. So please write us with anything you wanna know this week. Is your last chance to get the questions. In the piped-in massacre returned by county is executive produced by stephanie. Lie decker and me. Courtney armstrong editing and sound design by executive producer. Jared aston additional producing by jeff. Shane andrew becker and chris graves. The pike massacre returned to pay. County is a production of iheartradio and kt studios for more podcasts from iheartradio visit the iheartradio app apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to your favorite shows do you wonder where your food comes from more. And more people to america's corn farmers work hard every day to grow a crop that you can be proud to serve your family. And they're doing it with an eye toward sustainability caring for water air soil and resources that fuel healthy families and more sustainable products. Take a look to find out how farmers in rural america work to make life better for all of us from cities to their rural communities learn more at nc g. dot com in cg a a commitment to the future in a rapidly changing world. People wonder more and more about where their food comes from. And how it was grown farmers who grow america's corn understand how important this is and want to share the stories from our farms of how we are working to grow an incredible crop that can be an answer to sustainability questions and has grown by men and women who value the air water soil and our natural resources just like you to find out more about how corn farmers are working to feed and fuel a vibrant economy and healthy planet visit. Nca dot com a commitment to the future.
Episode 7- 25 Miles South
"At children's national hospital everything we do is just for kids are top. Ranked specialists are here for kids of all ages from babies who need help. Before they're even born to teens and young adults are pediatric experts. Work together to diagnose problems quickly and thoroughly and use treatments designed exclusively for growing children with convenient locations all across the dc metro area. Find a specialist. Today at children's national dot org slash stronger. Step up your home. Decor game at home says the newest member of the homegoods family. Every day you'll find game changing savings on rugs lamps and chandeliers furniture and more for inside and outside your home. Make your backyard. The envy of the neighborhood. Home sense is a new shopping adventure on every visit. New finds arrive all the time. So it's never the same store twice for brands. You love at prices that makes sense. Take a virtual tour and find a store near you at home. Sense dot com. Welcome to the painting massacre a production of iheartradio and katie studios. There were always these rumors about michael moran and the women that he was around the circles he ran in this guy trafficking women all over the country from this little town. It's known as the epicenter of the opioid epidemic public knowledge. That was the crazy thing. Everybody knew the rumors and had known somebody that knew somebody that worked for him. Abors in it to michael ryan's name his cell phone number. I had all this remains that really impacted our area a lot of closure to these families who are told nothing by our local officials are local for this is the pike and massacre returned to pike county season. Two episode seven twenty five miles south. I'm courtney armstrong a television producer at kt studios with stephanie. Lie decker and jeff. Shane in episode five of this season. We explored the allegations of corruption and the subsequent arrest of pike county. Sheriff charlie reader but his story is just one of many that has illuminated alleged abuses of power perpetrated by those involved in southern. Ohio's criminal justice system so in this episode. We wanna focus on another case that has long affected a community. Just twenty five miles south of piked in in a town called portsmouth. Ohio in two thousand fifteen reporter named nicky blankenship began investigating rumors of human trafficking in the town like many small ohio. Town's portsmouth has a long rich history of industrial might preceding an era of rapid urban decay. Here's james pilcher. Reporter for local twelve news and cincinnati. Speaking with our producer. Chris graves the county seat of kyoto. County which right below pike county. So it's about thirty to forty five minutes out. The pike portsmouth has this. Rust belt burned out industrial field. There are half empty to empty factories in the middle of the city at one point. Us shoe had biggest plant there. And then obviously you know the global economy and we all know what happened to manufacturing in the mid west it still has a small profitable steel mill. Downtown it's barely hanging on. So kyle a city that was forgotten when the manufacturing industry began to disappear. Portsmouth was besieged by the drug trade nikki. Blankenship grew up in the area and saw the devastation firsthand. Your areas been really hit by the opiate crisis right. Yeah we call ourselves. Ground zero for the opioid epidemic. I've lived in ohio. Since nineteen eighty-four insider counties. Yeah lived here my whole life. I remember in highschool people around me. They would start out with small pain pills and oxycontin hit and it was no longer recreational drug use. That people were doing that parties. You're seeing people become addicted very very very quickly in two thousand eight. Nikki started writing about the issue for a local newspaper. I started out covering the drug epidemic. I was the first in the area to do stories on oxycontin looking at overdose rates in the area and started asking those questions from the coroner's office. About how many of these deaths that we're seeing are connected to opiate use and then started looking into komo's and we ended up shutting down over twenty three helmets inside a county nikki's reporting helps at a late on the areas drug problem but other elicit industries sprung up around it. Nikki was there to cover it all and twenty thirteen. I did a series that ran for months on prostitution and i was walking the streets with these growth. I also talked to you like parents of one then that we're working on the streets and talk to officers about the problem and local businesses about how it affected It was interesting. Because when i was doing these stories i started seeing a lot of names. Come up from these girls. The one mentioned most often was michael. Moran michael moran. He's in his mid seventies long-time defense attorney. You know the you is drug offenses those kinds of things yet. His own firm in portsmouth and at one point in the late two thousands got himself appointed as a city. Councilman of portsmouth is a very public person. So if there was a red cross danquah or something covering he would be there. So he's he's been around my whole career pretty much now. Rumors had been circulating about mike moran for years they stories about him being involved in prostitution prostitution god way back to the seventies. A lot of those stories are just about him. Hiring grows stance and Apple local parties and poker gangs. It was a secret the everyone choked about but no one really talked about and it was pretty common knowledge. I think. I mentioned like a red cross bank. I had to cover once. He was air with a girl known to be arrested for prostitution known to be arrested for drug abuse and she was there you could tell that. She was under the influence her behavior. She being very loud. I'm on a cell phone with this. And speaking very appropriately for the study and like just laughing with her at westerly councilman at the time. Actually wendover towards me jokingly elbow me in the side than said. There's mike at one of his girls. It's just always been known as nikki began exploring maran's ties to the local sex trade. The story grew much darker. I was interviewing some people who were in an inpatient treatment facility. And i found out that one of the women over the program was involved with a human trafficking program and so i started talking with her about human trafficking and she said that when women are arrested eleazar major moran has been going to see them in jail and charges and exchange floor doing sexual favors for him and working in prostitution nikki. Further explain the allegations levelled against moran by area. Women that the crux of what he does is. He offers his legal services to get these women out of jail and then put some under his employee. Yes he gets women out of gel and basically gets into his clutches. Our stories are the people are hired as dog walkers or as cleaners and and said are actually working in prostitution. An affidavit filed by the. Da would later support these accounts. James explained that this method of manipulation marks the distinction between prostitution and human trafficking from people will say oh well these women knew what they were doing. They were just trying to make money. These women were prostitutes. Well if you talk to the experts it went one step beyond that. It went into trafficking because some of those allegations moran was holding over them the fact that they were drug addicts even he would withhold their money or withhold. Their money wherewithal to get drunk so the statute says if you withhold or threatened to withhold money that women need for drugs or withhold. The drugs trafficking. 'cause it's coercion anytime you can prove coercion. It's traffic both in ohio law in federal. We're going to take a quick break here. We'll be back in a moment. Remember the saying if you love something. Set it free. If it doesn't come back it was never yours to begin with well when it comes to your identity. The folks at lifelock totally disagree all those nights working overtime. Saving up all that money paying off all that debt and now some identity thief wants to try and set it free. They say that's crazy talk and we agree. That's why lifelock by norton helps monitor your info and alert you to potential entity threats. And if you do become a victim a dedicated us-based specialist will be there to help fix it. No one can prevent all identity theft or monitor all transactions at all businesses but when identity thieves. Try to take what you were as you don't have to take it lying down. Save up to twenty five percent of your first year by going to lifelock dot com slash. Piped-in that's lifelock dot com slash biden for twenty five percent off. Shell brothers is now building new homes and ten unique communities across tax friendly coastal delaware with twelve models available to virtually tour you can discover shaw brothers unique curb appeal and sensational floor plans from the comfort of your own home. Spring is the perfect time to start planning your dream home to start exploring shall brothers has to offer visit us today at shell. Brothers dot com models currently open by appointment. Only some believe michael moran's reached goes farther than even human trafficking in two thousand thirteen. A portsmouth woman. They meghan lancaster disappeared. Michael moran has denied any involvement or responsibility in her disappearance. Additionally authorities have not brought any charges against him in the case at this time it's unclear whether they have questioned him in the matter. Megan is probably the case that is closest to my heart than that's mostly her sister-in-law catering catcher has screamed in screaming the screen on her behalf. My name is katie lancaster the sister-in-law amvest friend of megan lancaster who's been missing from soda counties since april third two thousand and thirteen who was Megan lancaster and how did you meet. We met at a called saturday county joint vocational school. We were taking calls mythology and she is a wonderful loving. Give the shirt off her back person that i know for a fact that this tragedy had to happen to anybody. She would have given everything she had to save the next person. Megan katie formed and unbreakable bond and soon became family members. I was spending about every night with megan. Pretty much donskoy. Megan would say my brother wants to take you on a day. So as to the okay. Okay like i'll take me for dinner so on and so forth and i did that. Well i never left. I was seventeen and we just hit it off and ellen rob katie and megan's brother jimmy were married in two thousand and five a few months later. Katie became pregnant soon after. Megan did as well. I went into labor august. Thirty first had my baby. September first like in the middle of the night and she had her baby november force. Though we were legitimately only you know a couple months. Apart in two thousand six meghan gave birth to a son named reese. Being a young single mother was tough but megan seem to have a bright future ahead of her. In sports she played she played to the fullest. She was there for her team. Always tearing everybody on the softball. She was the pitcher. She had a full ride scholarship to shawny state. I mean emmy nagin couldn't have been any smarter than what she was. Despite her intelligence and athleticism megan fell victim to the drug epidemic. That gripped the portsmouth area. She was that you know that she used drugs. That she used a needle. It was rough and i would tell her. I would say meagan. I would try to play. Both sides like her friend and her sister-in-law. I would say megan. You need to get helping. You need to change for you first and foremost what at the same time. You need to do it for rees because he needs in. Our answer was katie. Why change it. Now everybody's gonna look at me the same way. I'm never gonna live down the things i've done. I'm never be able to change that opinion that people have of me. She just couldn't pass the past. He you know of things that she felt people would never forgive. And then the point took over megan and it led to more years later a strange encounter with meghan would leave katie forever. Suspicious of one local man. Michael moran. I was in walmart with jeremy. And all of a sudden i see megan gump bouncing down. The i'm unlike what the l. was she wear. It was literally lingerie to be honest. Because you said. I'm here to get something for this party. I'm doing for moran. It's a bachelor party. And i'm dislike okay but again what what. Why are you in here in the. Is this what. I'm wearing to the party. And i'm like get whatever you're getting and get the heck out of here before you get arrested for indecent exposure. Can you describe april third. Twenty thirteen april third twenty. Thirteen meghan went missing that day. She was with her mom as she went to her. Mom's early in the morning said mom. I need to pay my insurance. Because she had been pulled over in cold war record been impounded for literally like sixty dollars in back child support or something so her mom followed her to portsmith nagin got in her mom's card imports with they wrote down to the bonding company. They paid her insurance then got back in her own car her mustang and they went their own ways later that day. Megan culture mother marcie to make arrangements to see her son. She said mom. I'll be there to stay the night with race but that night meghan never showed up in the next day march Get a hold over. Couldn't went buyer apartment. Her car wasn't there more stop. She's out running the streets or whatever you know run in the roads much more about it. Two days later on april fifth megan's car was found in the parking lot of a local fast food restaurant. She was nowhere to be found. What second about the car was the fact that it was up on the curb and megan would never have parked it like that. She especially she might pulled in if she was in a hurry again. God out and got something got right back in the car and left but she would have never pulled in there to leave it there like that inside. the car. police found megan's wallet and a small notebook that contains some suspicious entries. She left clues as to who she'd been working for which even up to yes. She left abors in it. They actually said dance. Four and michael. Maran's name his cell phone number and how much he paid her to dance. We know we have. This problem is missing and we know we have this problem with women. Hope if found dead in their cases never their murders of never been solved and despite that car set her mom talked to twenty thirteen. And there's Documents where they took it where they took. The car to evidence dated showing that and it was really katie. And megan's family that did all of the investigating and hire private investigators. They took get any cooperation from local police. So it's megan's case really. It's the only one that has really been made public so people can see exactly what these women have gone through and how these things have happened. My an was running a decades long sex trafficking operation. We're talking about some serious abuse of power. What are your thoughts on that. Abuse of power makes me completely fucking sick. Excuse my language. But i don't know how else to put. It makes me sick because you know. He's in this position to help people to help rebuild their lives if a vin in trouble once or twice drug charge whatever they send them to treatment. They do this. They do that but he takes it a step further and takes them like bison what they want courses them into these things that they've never had before and then boom. That's on drugs back to doing what they were doing. Back in trouble and to me. That is sickening. And there's no excuse for it. Do you think. Mike moran is involved in making spirits. I do believe. Michael moran is involved in megan's disappearance and i do believe that we will eventually tie mike moran q. megan's disappearance. Let's stop here for another quick break. We'll be back. In a moment we're making lower emission. Vehicles are priority reusable packaging our priority and carbon capture research to offset emissions our priority because earth is our priority at fedex. We knew sustainability. Means a lot to you and we feel the same way. Our goal is to be carbon neutral by two thousand fourteen. We call it priority earth fedex. Were now meets snacks. Hi everyone this is tamra bridget. And adrian habit and with host of sweat the details a brand new podcast from under obama and iheart radio. It's a show or women by women. Aim to spotlight leading voices in today's fitness industry. The bigger relationship the more fun you have with your team at south carolina and ah dallas slings. It wasn't so much of my teammates was more my sister's it was a sisterhood. That was our circle in nothing. Could break our circle or von. We're ready to shake up what it means to be a woman in sport. Today it's compensations fueled by the latest scientific research about personal fitness. Listen to sweat the details on the iheartradio app apple podcast or wherever you get your podcast. What's it like to go through losing a family member or friend but not actually knowing what happened to them it's hell. I was talking to my mother-in-law about this today. You know people lose people all the time and they have a grave to somewhere they can go visit that they show that that person is there or they have ashes. They have for whatever. What have you. But we have a flipping sign with missing on it that we decorate and it is heartbreaking heart. Not to know whether she's hungry she's cold. She's meeting her to abuse or worse she's dead not to know that is so hope i see her. Mom susser daily on courtly. I see her. Pay me boy suffer very badly and i'm not saying that you know. He cries every day or no not saying. Here's a lot of questions we can't answer but i can guarantee you. I will stop talking. Answer surmount care if he's twenty five thirty thirty five forty Around that long. I'll fight until i can answer this questions for him. In an interview moran claimed that he only knew megan as a police informant who is tied to with drug case. He tried years back when asked about what may have happened to. Her moran believed that she may have been murdered though. He had no information to support his statement. It should be noted that there have been no other specific allegations tying moran to the disappearance of any other women nikki. Blankenship continued her investigation into human trafficking in portsmouth but her attempt to report on the areas missing women was met with some pushback. You kind of started this with this story. The seemed to have been local knowledge that no one was reporting on right when i was. I saying. Talk about the missing women. I was told that it didn't matter if there was proof it was. Can we talk about the missing women. Can i talk to their families. I was told nikki. Didn't let that stop her. So i i have seen these things personally insider cownie. We say that everyone's affected because if it's not your friend is or your family member. It's at least you went to school with everybody. Know somebody who's been affected by the drug epidemic and everybody knows somebody who has turned costitution so this is a pretty personal story for you. Yeah i spent highly my whole career. I like working on this and nobody was listening to their stories before or seeing them as even human. That really made me connect with a lot of these people in their stories. Living here my whole life these are my friends and my family members as well not specifically. I have so many friends overdose. I have so. Many inset have battled addiction and a lot of people i went to school with are are gone now. I have several friends from high school that ended up working in prostitution. People are human and yet they're seen as a prostitute or inadequate exactly and that makes people not really care what happens to them that makes people assume that they chose some lifestyle that is dangerous. Amex assume that they somehow are asking for that. Or whatever happens as a part of a lifestyle they chose and so they just turn a blind eye. And i think that's another thing that has made it so easy for to happen and the habit right in public as people see them as prostitutes addicts. Nikki didn't give up. Searching for proof linking michael moran to portsmith sex trafficking industry. I was at home. A lot At night just going through court documents than talking families because l. all these families we always made trusted so then for me it was like how do i get something more than a story from family member or even a girl. I need some proof. Finding some kind of document in two thousand seventeen. She got it. A man named mark eubanks reached out to her and pass along. A copy of a sworn affidavit filed by the drug enforcement agency mark eubanks. He had been reading my stories on human trafficking and on the heroine epidemic. And he smelled me. A copy of the silt. Affidavit was actually a part of his case and had told me history which was he has been arrested on charges and when he was arrested he was immediately taken a given lie detector tests about missing women at dead lemon. Mike moran human trafficking the affidavit lee out southern ohio drug task force and fbi that had been underway since twenty fifteen investigating michael moran and his ties to area sex trafficking. He's accused of trafficking women all over the country from new york and new jersey florida racketeering and compelling at partying prostitution and other thing. That is in the affidavit that he was working traffickers and there was a wiretap where they were able to hear some of the conversations between moran drug traffickers and he was getting drugs from these drug traffickers in order to provide to the females a he had or for him the athol david reciprocally talks about whom working web liberal judges and law enforcement and adult probation. Macy's things happen. Nikki finally had to prove she needed that validated. The stories told by portsmouth's most vulnerable women. But when she brought the document where editor she was shocked. Nato told me no. We're not going to publish. Michael moran would later be arrested and charged with eighteen. Felony counts including promoting prostitution and trafficking in persons He was released on a three hundred thousand dollar bond which was later revoked after he violated the terms of his agreement. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges and staunchly maintains his innocence. He is now under house arrest while he awaits trial. We'll bring you the second part of the michael moran story in episode nine but next week will be hearing from some of our regular contributors who will discuss updates from accused brother george wagner the force. Most recent pretrial hearing for more information on the case and relevant photos. Follow us on instagram at. Kt underscore studios the piped-in massacre. Returned by county is executive produced by stephanie. Lie decker and me. Courtney armstrong editing and sound design by executive producer. Jared aston additional producing by jeff. Shane andrew becker and chris graves. The pike massacre returned to pay. County is a production of iheartradio and katie studios for more podcasts. From iheartradio visit the iheartradio app apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to your favorite shows a shell. Brothers is now building new homes in unique communities across tax friendly coastal delaware with twelve models available to virtually tour. You can discover shah unique curb appeal and sensational floor. Plans from the comfort of your own home. Spring is the perfect time to start planning your dream home to start exploring everything. Show others has to offer visit us today at shaw brothers dot com models currently open by appointment only been thinking about mcdonald's all day can't get it off my mind i can already tasted. Oh my mind on my mouth and my mouth ready for some mickey. D's deal is a deal for every moment at mcdonald's right now get to your favorites for just. Three fifty makes magic. Classic mcchicken a hot and spicy chicken or a juicy mcdonnell price and participation may vary cannot be combined with combo meal single item at regular price.
Episode 9- 25 Miles South Part 2
"Okay so you got to check out home sense. I've heard the deals are pretty amazing. Home sense has incredible prices on nice brand name stuff furniture rugs lights decor it's endless so for every room. Exactly it's different every time you go kind of like a treasure hunt. You never know what you'll find like a reclaimed wood table. Okay okay. you're right. I definitely have to check out home. Sense tell jeff you can take a virtual tour online. Get directions to the store at home. Sense dot com. I'm dr lori centers. I'm a psychology professor at yale. And i started to notice that a lot of my students all that happy so i created a new class longtime everybody to psychology and the good life. But it's not just my students who need to understand the science being and that's why we launched the happens lab so you can learn about too. Are you ready to feel happier. Head to iheartradio app apple podcasts. Or if you like to listen brought to you by ziprecruiter. The smartest way to hire. Welcome to the piped-in massacre production of iheartradio and katie studios. Somebody pretty important in ohio. Once asked to be why. I was so vested interested in this case in sex trafficking. I had to be honest with myself and i had to say when i first heard it. I didn't believe it. i didn't think it was widespread. And ever since then. It's been like these women aren't lying and they deserve all lavar. This is the pectin massacre return to pike county season. Two episode nine twenty five miles south part to. I'm courtney armstrong a television producer at katy studios with stephanie lie. Decker and jeff shane throughout the series we've examined abuses of power by authorities in ohio from law enforcement officials to city councilman investigative reporter. James pilcher drew a through line in the cases of pike. County sheriff charlie reader michael moran and the corruption that has infiltrated the southern ohio criminal justice system happening in these kinds of counties. So much either. Hey you had ineffectual or corrupt or both law enforcement right. You had a community or a culture of lawlessness that has descended on upon many places in rural america. And i think that's one of the reasons. Nobody's watching nobody cares to watch not to enhance or blow up importance of journalists. But if you don't have some kind of watchdog or Somebody holding officials accountable i. It doesn't always work in two thousand. Seventeen reported nikki. Blankenship uncovered an affidavit filed by the drug enforcement agency. The document detailed and fbi investigation into a portsmouth. Ohio lawyer and former city councilman michael moran. Its content supported stories. Nikki had long heard from area. Women who claimed that moran was involved in sexual digging and prostitution. It should be noted. That michael moran has strongly denied the allegations. So when i got this affidavit. I i mean they took it to my publisher my editor and they wanna prove that it was real it was authentic and all this was real and so i contacted private investigators that i knew had the look into the document further. I call people in court systems. That i knew and had them looking into it. I verified it over and over and over and ultimately they said that no we're not going to publish gave my letter of resignation that day and the said ethical differences. I left during the course of her reporting on sex trafficking and southern ohio. The issue had become personal for nikki. She often spoke with the families of portsmouth women that had fallen into prostitution and others whose family members had gone missing or been murdered after her resignation. Nikki had a crucial decision to make. I made a promise to the families little bit. But i promised these families and i shouldn't have as journalists thomas them but i did. I promise that i was going to scream until someone listened. So i felt like i was just repeatedly be shut down. I feel very helpless. I had to do something. I had to put it out there somewhere. And social media's. I knew even if only local families were able to see that i thought it might them in some way give them something and as a local journalist a lot of people locally were on my facebook page so i went ahead and i publish him. I went to sleep. Woke up the next morning. I had hundreds probably thousands of whites on the close already traits if not thousands of shares and messages for everyone. But it kinda went crazier than i expected to win. You saw the affidavit. What ran through your head. I was not a bit stunned and people. They want me to be stunned. But i wasn't. That's katie lancaster. Speaking with producer. Chris graves katie's best friend and sister-in-law megan lancaster went missing twenty thirteen. Katie alleges that megan worked for michael moran as a prostitute moran denies these allegations. What went through my head is. Oh my gosh like. I'm not the only one that sees this. You know like the fbi sees it like it was just so just a sense of relief. News of the affidavits spread. It soon. Caught the attention of cincinnati inquirer investigative editor. Bob strictly who had once worked for the newspaper. The portsmouth daily times initially was sports editor in portsmouth and was elevated to managing editor. And during my time there there were always these rumors about michael moran and the women that he was around in circles he he ran in and at the time early in my career it just seems so far fetched or smith if nothing else is a remote so a lot of things get tossed around without substantive evidence to back it up but it was quite surprising to receive or that there is something that could actually back this up. We got a copy of it ourselves and verified through various attorneys and around the council. And i went back and looked through notes that i take and i 'cause i never throw away notebook for my time. Working enforcement was like a lot of this tracks. And here's a government official saying so and it's in a sworn affidavit. So it's time for the chips allah table and get involved says too. Big of a story took more even. If it is a place that is not traditionally in an area where type paper covers it. I don't know if initiated a sense of responsibility as much as it triggered a pretty huge amount of guilt that motivated me to go pitch the story of our bosses despite paper being two and a half hours away from the subject that we were covering and luckily bosses were hospitable enough to allow us to explore that dig real deep in this story and turn over some rocks that needed to be turned over decades ago the puerta. Jane's kilter was writing for the inquirer at the time mob. Boss came to me. Because i was investigative reporter and said what do you think about this. You wanna take a look at this guy. Trafficking women all over the country from this little town. This burned out shell of a town. It's known as the epicenter of the opioid epidemic. Is he doing. This is it. Sure can we prove it. I really thought there was no way. There was no way this could be going on for so long and nobody did anything about the other interesting thing. Was that the paper got. This wouldn't publish it. I mean it's a federal affidavit and they still wouldn't publish it right. There in the hometown of mike moran picks it the big city newspaper from two hours away in cincinnati to come in and do this investigation now granted. We have the resources of usa today behind this but why not at that have been published or if the local newspaper had been truly and independent harm or an independent high with some of this stuff have gone on. I don't think so the first time i went to portsmouth. I didn't know what to expect. Nate partnered me fulltime with photographer. Who is also on the story is she and i were just shooting some footage out at the. Us shoe factory and there was graffiti. They're talking about a prostitution and drugs and things like that and this guy writes up on a bicycle san What you guys doing. We just kinda tell them so. By the way you know michael marine he said oh yeah that guy runs women point where like oh my god. Everybody in town knows guy on the street knows this guy. We didn't even ask. In twenty tilt to begin the difficult task of locating area women and asking them to open up to him about alleged experiences with michael moran yun of that year. I got the first woman to come forward and say. Here's exactly how he did it. And then by july we had one or two on the record and if these allegations proven true this guy was in the seat of power. He had these vulnerable women coming to him for help from a legal perspective. Any offering the other way out do this. And maybe i can get these charges less than for you. We heard that story over and over again. Do this and you won't go to jail. And how much of a worst abuse of power could there being. He started this story. not believing. this is possible. How does that make you feel. I'm six seven to forty. I looked like a cop. Got a big black tea. Where black fedora. I'm not warm and cuddly and people don't immediately warm up now. A good conversationalist by i was the government kind of accountability reporter and getting women to open up. Tell me these awful things to happen to them. That was eye opening and it was a new skill. I had to learn. I also had to be the reporter. I also had to be the objective reporter and the hard part was i also had the fact. Check all these women. I couldn't just take their word for my publications reputation was on the line. My reputation was on the line. I had to elite but be skeptical so when they would tell me all. I remember that. I got arrested in this particular place and i have to say okay. Where when what can you tell me. i'd have to go. Look up the court records all of those things and try to make sure that the timelines never since then it's been like i. You know these women are lying and they deserve boulevard. The more pilcher investigated the deeper ties into the portsmouth. Legal system grew. We reported several times. The women were saying that moran would brag about his relationship with former scioto county commonplace court judge william marshall now william marshal was one of the marshall boys the in his brother where the son of the former judge marshall in that county so they'll marshall took his dad's place as one of two commonplace courts judges which oversees all the serious cases and all the felonies and all the high end civil cases at a county level. It's an elected position. There were allegations that iran was guiding them to have relations or go to parties with judge william marshal. It should be noted that judge. William marshall has staunchly denied these allegations or any illicit ties to michael moran. Though a judge is mentioned in the affidavit marshall has repeatedly insisted he is not the judge referred to as working in collusion with moran and has not been charged in connection with that probe but the allegations made by area. Women didn't stop at a local judge. One of the women who did go on the record for that first story told us that she partied with the former police chief. She partied with former members of the police department. All because moran said it up these women came forward and said these guys used their position to either traffic me. One lady got sent up to chicago not knowing what she was getting into and then turned into a prostitute up there and then other women were talking about how the probation department is brother. The guy ran. The probation department was using his position to lessen her probation. That's how deep this went. One of the best lawyers in a politician and a sitting judge all possibly involved in this network. And that's when we knew we needed to get more women who had been through this experience to talk about what they'd been through the following audio interview the cincinnati enquirer did with women named heather boots. She claimed to have been a sex trafficking victim in portsmouth. She went on the record about her. Alleged association with michael moran many lives for decade because the judges is the corruption thorough. All of its in fact any any house in a sale. That will tell you everything like it's seek james. Pilcher began further exploring the megan lancaster case. Katie lancaster thanks very strongly. That michael moran lured meghan into this life. And it's his fault. She's dead or missing now whether he actually was directly involved all we know she left behind a heck of a lot of notes about oliver different liaisons and all the people she would go to for money she kept all of it. Katie founded chess copies of everything. We called every single number in that some people acknowledge yeah about sex and she became like a slew of women went missing or got killed. Were addicted prostitutes. Sex workers up in ross county in chillicothe iw which is two counties to the north. I mean we're talking. Does dozen more win so meghan. A lot of people theorize the meghan might have been wrapped up in something that got those women killed by. There's a lot of thought. And there's a lot of Theory or rumor that no that that was separate from what happened to her and what happened to her points back to possibly michael. Marine michael moran has denied any involvement or responsibility and meghan lancaster's disappearance moran has stated numerous times and interviews that the only involvement he had with making lancaster was in the case involving a former client. Where lancaster acted as an informant. He has said that he had no other relationship with her and that she did not work for him. Additionally authorities have not brought any charges against him in the case at this time it's unclear whether they have questioned him in the matter throughout twenty nineteen cincinnati inquirer published a series of articles by james pilcher and his colleagues about michael moran and his alleged ties to human trafficking. Everything that was in that affidavit. We reported it out as outrageous as it sounds allegations that he was running women all over the country. He was promising women drugs for sex. He had relationships with judges and with members of law enforcement all of it so those allegations all of this is in the federal document and yet they never moved on moran now the. Da says we ended all the stuff about human trafficking over the fbi. Says we're not going to comment on any potential ongoing investigation so you can see how frustrated we were with like okay. Why doesn't anybody move on him. What's going on here bob. Strictly shared pictures frustration. Very important thing that the press does when they're when it's done well is is to shine lights in you know and to offer a vehicle for those people stepping forward right. Do you find a sense of kind of responsibility of making sure. Those those voices are heard. What set this one apart was just the amount of women at stepped forward and said something about this to us talk to us about it and then also the apparatus that has to exist around a person michael moran for an operation as we reported on to exist in the first place a lot of people have turn their heads kinda damn ability of people who just turn the other way. Don't care about what's going on right in front of them in their communities more prevalent than maybe we all realised initially going to take a quick break. Here we'll be back in a moment. It's crazy how much we have to pay for outdated impersonal healthcare and even crazier that we all just accept it. It's time to face facts. Healthcare is backwards. Luckily there's forward a new approach to primary care that surprisingly personal and refreshingly straightforward forward never makes you feel like just another patient backed by top rated doctors and the latest tech forward gives you access to personalized care whenever you need it. Using in-depth genetic analysis and realtime bloodwork forwards top rated doctors provide you with in-depth insights to better understand your genetics mental and physical health. They then create custom easy to understand plans to help guide you to achieving long-term health with forward you get unlimited in person visits with your doctor and access to care anytime via the forward app offer. One flat monthly fee. It's time to stop accepting backwards. Healthcare and start moving. Your health forward visit go forward dot com today to learn more. That's go forward. Dot com. Dinnertime can be chaotic. But with freshly it's easy they're chefs. Take care of your meals a few nights a week and take the pressure off you freshly offers chef made nutrient packed. Delicious meals delivered fresh to your door. No cooking required grocery shopping and cooking can be a pain especially right now and with freshly you. Don't have to your meals arrive cooked and fresh every week. So you can keep your fridge stocked and skip the trip to the store ordering is easy visit freshly dot com and choose from over thirty delicious satisfying better for you meals like steak pepper. Corn sausage baked penny or my personal favorite their chicken. Pesto bowl freshly can fit your lifestyle with a variety of plans in meals to pick from that work for your dietary needs preferences tastes and family size and now our listeners can try freshly for just six dollars and sixteen cents per meal stop searching the internet for quote healthy food near me every night and start living life freshly your meals are always delivered fresh never frozen and are ready to heaton enjoy in just three minutes with new meals added each week freshly brings the convenience of chef made nutritionist design classics right to your kitchen right now freshly is offering our listeners. Forty dollars off your first two orders. When you go to freshly dot com slash piped-in stop stressing about dinner. Good a freshly dot com slash piped-in for forty dollars off your first two orders that's freshly dot com slash payton for forty dollars off your first two orders as part of his reporting pilcher. Track down michael moran to get his side of the story moran vehemently denied all the allegations about being involved in any prostitution or sex trafficking rings up. Talk to michael moran three times at length and we. I talked to him i said. Are you a sex trafficker. People have said your sex trafficking it says here in this affidavit your sex trafficker what do you say to that. She tried to play the dumb country lawyer. The following is an audio recording from that interview. With michael moran. I don't even know. What a kimmy. The definition of a sex trafficker. So then we get all these women lined up. We come back home and say okay. We've got these women now saying that you're the guy and he says okay and then he was more angry. He would not go on camera with a second time during one conversation pilcher. S moran specifically about making. Lancaster moran denied being her pimp or being involved in any of that kind of activity but when james pilcher brought up the possible whereabouts of megan lancaster. He got a shocking response. Pilcher related the story to producer. Jeff shane a joke with me. Hey maybe she's in my basement. Maybe she's in my backyard. He thinks that the joke because he knows what the rumors are late. What you so. You asked him directly about it absolutely. I said you have anything to do with meghan lancaster and he said no. But you can check my basement. everybody else wants to. You can check out back. He said i. I've invited the cops in to take a look. Well i'm not going to surmise whether he's trying to get away with anything because i i don't know whether or not he had anything to do with her disappearance. I really don't are reporting. Didn't lead down those path. But he had this attitude that he thought he was smarter than you that he thought he was smarter than anybody. And i think what probably from my reporting in my history on all this is a. I read a lot of stuff about him and leading up to them and i'd see stories here and there but nobody but nikki blankenship kept adam. Nobody kept on him. And i can tell you that we never went away. The photographer person that i worked with was always in the courtroom blogging. Blogging him. That she was there was always taking pictures or getting video of him in action in the courtroom. We never went away. In twenty twenty authorities finally made their move phillies rated. The home of a well known lawyer suspected of running a national sex trafficking ring for years march twenty fifth state and local police raid. Michael moran's house with a search warrant in dave used. the attorney general was personally present for that enforcement. When you get the state attorney general showing up to serve a search warrant. You know that there are some very important people watching this. I'm looking at the story. I did and you can see. Iran is sitting on his porch in his stocking feet while police are searching his office. Slash house now. The thing you've got to remember too which is interesting is brick two story house. It sits on the corner right across from the courthouse and right across catty-cornered from the local prosecutor's office. So he literally can walk back and forth from his house. Slash office to the courtroom and walk right in front of the prosecutor's office. Just seven months later it all came crashing down for michael moran longtime defense lawyer and former city councilman has been arrested in an alleged sex trafficking operation friday october. Twenty third to twenty twenty state and local police teamed up in arrested. michael moran. this comes nearly seven years. After that initial affidavit issued by the da for nikki blankenship. It was a day that marks the culmination of years of tireless work and a victory for dozens of portsmouth women. When my father was arrested october twice he was arrested on the eighteen charges that included sex trafficking racketeering telling 'em promoting prostitution when that came out. That was a real exciting day for me. I was screaming iran screaming. Because i worry that no one was ever gonna check. No one was really ever gonna look into it. I really worry. I know that the cincinnati inquirer they had to do their own investigation but it was approximately a year before they started releasing things and when they release things. I still didn't know anything was ever going to happen. And so finally i was like okay. At least somebody's finally checking. Did it kind of validate journey started on. Yeah yeah it definitely did. There are also a lot of people who are saying. He's a great man. And i worried about that. I'm like did i make a mistake. Am i wrong. And there's no way. I have seen that i i was at this point. I'm like i have so much evidence. But still i can't. I don't want to hurt anyone's life. So yeah i was like okay. Something i it was valid and everything i have time for for a decade is olive yeah katie. Lancaster also felt a great sense of relief and was struck by the uncanny timing of miranda arrest. Maria was arrested october. Third twenty twenty the day before megan's thirty third birthday. I mean i was on my way to columbus not jumped out the damn car while it was moving. I couldn't speak. I couldn't talk. Couldn't tell anybody what was going on. I was just like oh my gosh. Oh my gosh. Like i just couldn't believe it and four to happen the day that it did it was almost like a sense of okay now i know this is a god thing like this happened the day before. Megan's birthday almost eight years into it like it could not have come at a better time. It was like oh my gosh we did it. We got this far. Megan look what you have done like. I just wanted five minutes. Heard say that she's done. Let's stop here for another quick break. We'll be back in a moment. Okay so i just got to tell you about shopping at home sense. Oh yeah. I need to check that out. Is it good. It's better than good. trust me. it's a whole new way to shop. Maybe even life changing seriously. Oh yeah see home. Senses part of the homegoods family. So you know going in that everything will be less than you expect to pay. I love that. And here's the best part. Home sense is never the same store twice. They put out new items all week long. So there's always something new every visits kind of like a treasure hunt the other day. I've found zebra print accenture. I could use a new chair. Home sense has stuff to plus up every room in your house. There's so much to choose from furniture rugs lights hall the decor so many throw pillows while art and bulls. Okay you got me. I've got to check out home sense. You can take a virtual tour online and to get directions to the store at home. Sense dot com. Oh and when you go yeah take me with you. Deal support for this podcast comes from. Cslr clear if stubborn shower mold. Has you miffed or you're hard pressed to get rid of hard water build up. It's high time you kick your so-so cleaning products to the curb. It's time to fight the clean fight with a seal are clear. Family of products. Seal are clear. Knows there's all kinds of dirty. Which is why they offer products to help you. Take on messes all around your home. So go on and fight out that countertop crowd square up with those carpets danes co crazy on your garbage disposal gunk are clear has formulas to help you. Get the dirty deeds. Done plus many of their products meet the epa safer product standard so while tough on messes it still the safer choice for your family and the environment show dirt and grime around your home. Who's boss with. Cslr clear and fight the clean fight. Learn more about the entire product lineup by going to l. are brands dot com. Just three days. After his arrest michael moran appeared in court it was arraigned on october. Twenty six pled not guilty and then he posted a three hundred thousand dollar barn and was released five days after his duress he was also suspended by the state bar association so he's not allowed to practice law at all both from the bar perspective but also from his bond agreement but that didn't stop moran from trying to pull off an audacious legal maneuver so michael marina actually initially filed to defend himself in court. He had the intimate knowledge things that these women would never want to know publicly and he he could cross examine them on the witness stand so i actually talked to the attorney general about this and he said there's no way that we're going to let them do that. They strongly strongly objected. And moran is since Backed off of that. He hired attorney. It didn't take long for moran to violate his bond agreement. As it turns out moran represented somebody against the court order he represented somebody municipal court and file paperwork for somebody in municipal court in portsmouth. As part of his bond agreement he was supposed to have not represented anybody now state attorney general's under the direction of dave ios. The state attorney. General is prosecuting. This case against moran in association with a prosecutor. Shane team so when they got this day immediately filed with the court to have his bond agreement revoked. And i'll take anything seriously. And don't know i don't think the court is really pushing him to have to take any of this very serious either because they even though he violated the conditions of his bond instead of sending him back to jail. They believe on house arrest. Currently michael moran is awaiting trial though. A date has not been set. He continues to maintain his innocence. If these allegations proven true. This wasn't a one-off you did this many times. It was part of a network but this was a part of a repeating pattern of criminal activity. He's looking at seventy years or more. If convicted in their concurrent sentences. I think in small communities like in southern ohio and there's just been beaten with poverty and drug addiction and and so many things. I think that it is so easy to feel helpless and powerless against these kind of the lake. My night this can get by with us and do whatever they want. And i think people and areas prey on the community areas like this. I think i've always said that. All the way down to the drug epidemic. That people come in offering to help and really. They're just looking out. they can profit. And as a lot of wilson sheep's clothing at me very hard to trust your officials your local government your local law enforcement because those people are supposed to be there to help you. They promised to be there to help you end to fight these problems with you and really. They're taking advantage in and property as much as they possibly can also be issues that the rest of us after bottle every day. If megan was sitting in front of you right now what would you say to say to her again. We love you so much and we've missed you so bad and a little boy. He's wonderful boys. Doing grays doing great. Thanks just like you are key play scorch. it's like q. did you need to know. Great things of the rate changes that you've known saudi county and in ohio and in the world for that matter. Your story is reese london in what you've done great things and you will continue to do them because i will continue to for you and we love you and we miss you always journalists and their end up reporting played immensely important role in exposing the michael moran story however as we've progressed through this series. We've often wondered how our storytelling impacts the legacy of cases like the road and murders their families and the pike county community in general so in the next episode we delve into our societies current fascination with true crime stories and our role and responsibility in covering them. We were talking about the media machine and entertainment versus covering true crime. Their compelling stories. And i think we are seekers of truth. How did this happen. That's why we rubbernecking car accidents. I've interviewed crime victims for i mean the totality of my career. The flip side of you know hoping we help people give them an ear is also being really careful that we don't do further harm and that's the thing i worry about and i know we can do better more on that next time for more information on the case and relevant photos follow us on instagram. At kt underscore studios the pike and massacre. Returned by county is executive produced by stephanie. Lie decker and me. Courtney armstrong editing and sound design by executive producer. Jared aston additional producing by jeff. Shane andrew becker and chris graves the pike and massacre returned to pay. County is a production of iheartradio and kt studios for more podcasts from iheartradio visit the iheartradio app apple podcasts. Or wherever you listen to your favorite shows shell brothers is now building new homes in ten unique communities across tax friendly coastal delaware with twelve models available to virtually tour you can discover shaw brothers unique curb appeal and sensational floor plans from the comfort of your own home. Spring is the perfect time to start planning your dream home to start exploring everything. Shop brothers has to offer visit us today. At shaw brothers dot com models currently open by appointment only switching to gyco is a good idea especially when you consider everything first off gyco makes it easy to switch. They have licensed agents available twenty four seven online or over the phone. If it's so easy you might start thinking everything is easy even big wave surfing and it's not as actually quite difficult. Well if you switch to geico you could save hundreds on car insurance and you can keep saving by bundling your motorcycle. Bow and rv plus your home renter's insurance but saving money might lead you to make some questionable purchases like a twenty foot feather boa and do you know how hard it is to clean a twenty foot. Feather boa well. They do have an industry leading mobile app. You can use to pay your bill. Filer manage a claim or at a new driver when life gets a little easier. It makes it too confident and you start calling everyone. Ace your better well. Geico has a ninety seven percents customer satisfaction rating and has been saving people money for eighty five years. It's hard to beat that but switch to geico. It's obviously a good idea.