Man found dead on Third St.

Suspect in Friday stabbing may be linked to death of man found in vacant lot with gunshot wounds

The Sandusky Register

Feb. 26, 2005


A Sandusky man was charged Friday with attempted murder for allegedly stabbing a man three times in the chest in an abandoned lot at the end of Third Street.

Deonta Boyd, also known as Deonta Reasor, 25, could face additional charges if police link him to the death of 45-year-old Bertrum D. Harrington of Perkins Township, whose body was found lying in the same lot with gunshot wounds to the head and neck.

According to Erie County Prosecutor Kevin Baxter, a 25-year-old Sandusky man called 911 at 6:18 a.m. Friday from a Fourth Street house and told dispatchers he'd been stabbed. He was taken to Firelands Regional Medical Center, and later flown to St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center in Toledo, where he was listed in serious condition Friday night.

Before he was flown, the man told Sandusky police officers that Boyd had stabbed him in a lot at the end of Third Street, Baxter said.

"He said that he was taken to this area by Deonta Boyd and shown a body there," Baxter said. "He was shown the body, and he was stabbed three times in the chest after that."

A woman who answered the phone at his listed address declined to comment.

Investigators found the body at about 10 a.m. Friday under brush near a tree at the edge of the lot, Baxter said. The body was later identified as Harrington, a man for whom Sandusky and Perkins police had been seeking nearly three weeks.

The night of Feb. 5, Harrington's wife told Perkins police that her black 2002 Mercury Mountaineer was abandoned in the 900 block of Shelby Street, but she did not have the keys to it, according to a Sandusky police report.

Officers involved in the investigation told a Register reporter Feb. 12 that the case involved "suspicious circumstances," but did not provide further details.

Baxter said Friday that police had found blood on the back seat and floor of the Mountaineer, along with two spent .380-caliber bullet casings. Samples were sent to the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation, and both agencies had been investigating Harrington's disappearance over the last three weeks.

After Harrington's body was removed for examination, a team of six to eight Sandusky and Perkins officers raided a home in the 1000 block of Vine Street, Sandusky, where Boyd was believed to be staying, Baxter said. Boyd was arrested without incident, and a .380-caliber handgun was recovered in the vicinity of the room where Boyd was found.

Sandusky police detectives interviewed Boyd from the time of his arrest until about 8 p.m., when he was transported to Erie County Jail. Baxter said Boyd had not offered any confession in connection with the stabbing or the body as of Friday night. He also declined to comment on any possible motives in the case.

As of Friday night, Boyd had been charged with attempted murder and aggravated robbery, both first-degree felonies, felonious assault, a second-degree felony, and having weapons while under disability, a fifth-degree felony.

Baxter said the robbery charge is because Boyd is accused of taking the stabbed man's car, and the disability charge is for carrying a weapon while having a previous felony conviction.

Boyd was indicted earlier this month by an Erie County grand jury for aggravated burglary. According to Sandusky police reports, Boyd had forced open the door to a Farwell Street home in December, threatened to shoot those inside and slammed a woman to the ground.

On Friday, Common Pleas Judge Tygh M. Tone signed an order submitted by prosecutors earlier in the day revoking Boyd's bond in that case.

Boyd was officialy released on parole from Lorain Correctional Institution on Jan. 14, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction Web site. He was indicted by an Erie County grand jury in 2003 for felonious assault and intimidation, and in September 2001 on felonious assault and having a weapon while under a disability.

Harrington was released on parole from the Richland Correctional Institution on Jan. 19, after serving seven years on charges of corrupting a minor, abduction, robbery and gross sexual imposition. He was listed as a "violator at large" Friday on the ODRC Web site.

Erie County Coroner Brian Baxter said it would be "a couple of days" before an autopsy could be performed on Harrington's body by the Lucas County Coroner's office, as it became partially frozen during the three weeks it was apparently lying in the lot.

Based on information from police and the two gunshot wounds found on the body, the early, unofficial cause of death is considered homicide, he said.