Kevin Keith 295769
878 Coitsville-Hubbard Road
Youngstown, Ohio 44505
According to Richard Warren after being shot he played dead and once the gun man left
Another Bucyrus Estates resident Nancy Smathers heard several popping sounds at as she looked out her front door, Smather’s claimed to see Black Man run to the parking lot and get into car, as the car sped away it slid on icy driveway and into snow bank leaving partial license plate identification. When she was asked by police if she could recognize the man again if she saw him; Nancy Smather’s said NO.
On February 15, 1994 two days after the murders Kevin Keith was watching television at his home in Crestline, Ohio several miles from the crime scene when S.W.A.T team kicked in his door, guns drawn and pointed directly at Kevin confirming the target(Kevin) was in their sight. Kevin startled immediately lies on floor where the S.W.A.T team members begin assaulting him. Kevin yells from his beating & assures them that there are no drugs in his home as he was under the impression that the police were searching for drugs. Kevin Keith was unaware at the time, but would soon realize that a drug case would be the least of his worries.
The Bucyrus Chief of Police Joe Beran feed the media fabricated evidence claiming that fibers, finger prints found at the crime scene match that of Kevin’s. And that all three of the surviving victims identified Kevin Keith as the gunman. However; during the course of the trail Sheryl Mahon, Latent Finger Print Examiner for the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification testified that “none of the finger prints taken from the scene or suspected get-away car matched Kevin’s”. Mahan testified that “there was no blood on any of Kevin Keith’s clothes including clothing taken from his home”.
Michelle Yezzo, Forensic Scientist testified that “Foot impressions left at the scene by the suspect didn’t match any of the foot wear owned by Kevin”. As well Yezzo testified that “fibers collected from the crime scene didn’t match at Kevin’s home or clothing; nor did fibers taken from suspected get away car”.
Two out of the three surviving victims Quentina & Quenton Reeves didn’t identify Kevin as the gunman. Quentina claimed Bruce did the shootings. She was shown the photo line up, as to Kevin’s photo she said he wasn’t the guy she knows as Bruce who had shooter and the others. (In other words, Quentina specifically stated Kevin Keith wasn’t the shooter… Exhibit A/News Article)
Demetrius Reeves & both Rodney and Bruce Melton were under a 99 count indictment and arrested on those charges shortly after Kevin’s arrest. They would all plead guilty in connection with the Pharmacy Burglary ring.
Police Captain Michael Corwin was aware of all three men drug activities as well knew of Rodney Melton’s previous murder conviction and was suspect in another unsolved homicide.
Captain Corwin admitted that he never showed Quetina Reeves or any of the other surviving victims a photo of Bruce or Rodney Melton. There were numerous attempts made by family members of Rodney & Bruce to consult with someone about their belief that both brothers were involved in the murders. And that the Melton’s own family members were fearful of them. (Exhibit B/Court Transcript).
Approximately 2 ½ hours after the murders occurred, Kevin traveled to Bucyrus, Ohio to pick up his girlfriend up from the General Electric plant where she worked. It was then that Kevin learned about the murders from her. His girlfriend learned of the murders from several General Electric employees who had visited the crime scene before coming to work.
Farnella Graham, a resident who lived across the street from the General Electric plant, found a single 9mm casing on her front sidewalk that would match casing found at the crime scene.
Larry Harden, Senior Special Agent for the B.C.I office who had previously worked with the Bucyrus police on several occasions, testified that “his initial report show that there were 18 shell casings found, but there were only 16 found”
Demetrious Reeves, the father of Quentina Reeves a surviving victim, also worked at the General Electric plant & when asked about the shell casing he pleaded the 5th amendment. None of the other plant employees who left the crime scene & came directly to work were questioned about the probability that one of them could have transferred the shell casing. The gun used in the murders has NEVER BEEN FOUND. Approximately 2 weeks before Kevin’s trail, there was another shooting which involved the Chatman family, Herbert Chatman’s home in
The shooting occurred on 4/17/94, the police said that bullets from that shooting had been sent to the B.C.I in London, Ohio & those bullets did appear to be 9 millimeter, as were the ones in the February killings. (See Exhibit C)
Detectives would later admit that the bullets from the send shooting were sent to the B.C.I Lab on
Where were the bullets being held for those 11 days that initially appeared to be 9 millimeter, as were the ones used in the earlier murders? Eventually the bullets from the second Chatman shooting (4/17/94) that the detectives claimed initially appeared to be 9 millimeter were “Supposedly” the same bullets submitted to the lab came back as being .38/.357 caliber.
One would have to question were the bullets collected on
The prosecution’s claimed that Kevin Keith’s motive to commit the murders was a result of a Chatman family member informing of drug activities.
2 ½ weeks after Kevin was convicted, the informant’s Uncle Herbert Chatman kidnapped a female drug informant from Bucyrus, Ohio and was eventually indicted on 9 counts including intimidation of Police Informant (See Exhibit E)
The murders took place at an apartment complex. There were several witnesses who initially told new reporters and police that the gunman had a ski mask on his face. But police Chief Joe Geran, who didn’t witness the shooting, in his diligence to make arrest and get a conviction, said that the police didn’t feel a mask was used.
This is just one of many illustrations of how the Bucyrus police chose to dictate what witnesses had witnessed.
When witnesses did come forward disagreeing with the police that Kevin wasn’t the shooter they were eventually badgered & convinced to keep silent. (See Exhibit F)
The police department & prosecutor’s portrayal of Kevin Keith as being a big time level drug dealer wasn’t the case. On the other hand Rodney & Bruce Melton along with Demetrius Reeves were apart of one of the Nation’s biggest pharmacy burglary rings and under a 99 count indictment.