Thursday, September 13th, 2012
$10,000 offered for conviction
Law enforcement believe murdered father, daughter not randomly selected
By Margie Wuebker
A $10,000 reward has been established in the unsolved murder case of a Fort Recovery-area man and his daughter.
Authorities continue to investigate the murders of Robert and Colleen Grube, who were found bound with duct tape and shot Nov. 30 at their Burrville Road home.
The reward, posted by donors who wish to remain anonymous, is for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the people responsible. It is hoped the money will elicit the final clues needed to resolve the case.
Mercer County Sheriff's Detective Doug Timmerman and Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification special agent Roger Davis believe the Grubes - a 70-year-old man and his 47-year-old daughter - were targeted; the culprits did not come to the door of the rural home by chance.
"The house was chosen for a reason," Timmerman said during a recent interview with The Daily Standard. "The people responsible had knowledge of something or heard something that made the Grubes targets."
The culprits - believed to include at least one man and a woman - were admitted to the home by one of the victims or they entered through an unlocked door; their was no sign of forced entry. Once inside they restrained the victims and searched the home.
"What took place inside the home was heinous," Davis said. "There is no rhyme or reason to what happened ... the people had no heart. They took what they wanted and then killed the Grubes anyway."
He added the Grubes were not capable of putting up much resistance - both had suffered strokes in recent years and Robert was in a wheelchair.
Both men believe the culprits were inside the Grube home for some time. They apparently ransacked the home and looked through "many things" in the process.
The only item officially listed as missing from the home is a laptop computer, although investigators admit they are not releasing details about the case that only the perpetrators would know.
The special agent, who has been assisting with the local investigation, is accustomed to dealing with victimology.
"The Grubes were low-risk victims," he said. "They were not drug dealers or people with alternative or hidden lifestyles. I don't know whether you could find lower risk victims. This is a true whodunit."
Timmerman agreed with the statement, noting the Grubes lived modestly and did not flash cash or valuables.
"They went to church on Sunday and to Wendelin Tavern for a weekly meal with family members," the detective said. "They had a long history of helping people and non-profit organizations."
Colleen Grube was last seen when she left her brother's home at 5 p.m. Nov. 29 after a day of babysitting. A relative discovered the bodies shortly before 9 a.m. Nov. 30 after her telephone calls to the home went unanswered. The timeline of the crime has been narrowed to a two-hour span, but authorities have not released that time.
Some 198 pieces of evidence have been sent to BCI & I labs in Bowling Green and Richfield - the most recent being several items two weeks ago. On occasion, some evidence has been sent back for further testing as new information has surfaced.
Investigators also have interviewed 219 people - some more than once - with the interviews recorded.
In addition to Timmerman and Davis, the investigative team includes detectives Lance Crum and Megan Baker. They have received assistance from the Ohio Attorney General's office and sheriff's offices in Darke County and Jay and Randolph counties in Indiana.
"We've crossed a lot of T's and dotted a lot of I's," Timmerman said. "We've excluded some people as possible suspects and kept others on the radar ... I am pleased with the way the investigation is progressing."
Timmerman, who updates members of the Grube family on progress made each week, encourages people to contact the sheriff's office with tips at www.mercercountysheriff.org or by calling the tip line at 567-890-TIPS. People also can log onto the attorney general's website (www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov) and leave tips on the agency's unsolved murder listing where the Grubes are numbers 118 and 119.
"This should never have happened in our area," Timmerman said. "One good tip could lead to the arrest of the people involved."