Wednesday, October 6th, 2010
Coroner rules death homicide by stranglulation
By Shelley Grieshop
VAN WERT - An elderly Van Wert woman found dead in her home on Friday was strangled to death, according to a coroner's report.
The report - one of the few details released by authorities about the case - describes 84-year-old Edna L. LaRue's death as a homicide. Her grandson, Shawn M. Jones, 36, of Richey Road, Van Wert, has been arrested and charged with the slaying.
County coroner Dr. Scott W. Jarvis determined LaRue died from ligature strangulation, meaning an object such as a rope, necktie or shoelace - anything but hands that can be wrapped tightly around the neck to cease breathing - was used to kill her. Her body was found in her home at 1279 Sunrise Court.
Emergency crews were called to the home at 8:32 p.m. Friday and found LaRue's body inside. Jones was identified as a suspect and approximately 6 1/2 hours later was arrested and charged with the murder.
Jones, a convicted felon and registered sex offender, appeared in Van Wert Municipal Court on Monday and was ordered held without bond. A preliminary hearing in the case is tentatively set for 2 p.m. Friday unless a grand jury convenes and indicts him for the crime. He is being held in the Van Wert County Jail.
Jones has claimed indigency and a court-appointed attorney is expected to be provided for his defense.
Van Wert City Police immediately called the death "highly suspicious." Assisting them in their investigation is Jarvis and the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation.
Authorities have not released a possible motive for the murder, who found the body or who placed the 911 call.