Ohio AG: Family slayings 'a pre-planned execution' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Ohio AG: Family slayings 'a pre-planned execution'

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Photo: NBC Photo: NBC
PIKETON, Ohio -

The Latest on the slayings of members of one southern Ohio family (all times local):
    
5 p.m.
    
The state attorney general has called the slayings of eight family members in rural Ohio a "pre-planned execution."
    
Mike DeWine said in a news conference late Sunday afternoon that the attorney general's office don't know if there is one or more suspects but that the investigation into who killed the Rhoden family, and why, will be lengthy.
    
DeWine called the killings a "sophisticated operation."
    
More than 100 personnel in the southern county of Pike are assisting in the investigation.
    
Seven adults and a teenage boy were found fatally shot Friday at four different properties near Piketon, about 60 miles south of Columbus. Autopsies are being performed this weekend. Authorities said investigations at the crime scenes are complete but will remain closed.
    
3 p.m.
    
A cook at a restaurant in rural southern Ohio says many people in the community remain on edge after the slayings of eight family members.
    
Maggie Owens says her son was friends with one of the victims, 16-year-old Christopher Rhoden Jr. Owens says she also knew 37-year-old Dana Rhoden, who she described in a phone interview on Sunday as having "a heart of gold."
    
The two victims and six others were found fatally shot Friday at four different properties near Piketon, about 60 miles south of Columbus. Authorities were still trying Sunday to find out who targeted the Rhoden family and why.
    
Attorney General Mike DeWine and Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader called for a 4:30 news conference Sunday to give an update into the investigation.
    
___
    
12:10 p.m.
    
A spokeswoman for Ohio's attorney general says authorities have yet to release the four locations where eight family members were slain in rural Ohio, though evidence collection has been completed.
    
Spokeswoman Jill Del Greco said Sunday that investigators want to keep the scenes preserved until all the autopsies have been completed and possibly longer than that.
    
Seven adults and a teenage boy were found fatally shot Friday at four different properties near Piketon, about 60 miles south of Columbus. Authorities were still trying Sunday to find out who targeted the Rhoden family and why.
    
The victims' bodies are at the Hamilton County coroner's office, where autopsies are expected to take the weekend.
    
Del Greco says investigators want to keep the scenes preserved in case they need to review them again.
    
___
    
11:20 a.m.
    
Gov. John Kasich (KAY-sik) is calling the slaying of eight family members in rural southern Ohio "a horrible set of murders."
    
Seven adults and a teenage boy were found fatally shot Friday at four different properties near Piketon, about 60 miles south of Columbus. Authorities were still trying Sunday to find out who targeted the Rhoden family and why.
    
Kasich says he's been getting updates on the case as he is campaigning out of state for the Republican presidential nomination.
    
The governor told CBS in an interview Saturday that he is confident the perpetrators would be found and "justice will be delivered to them."
    
Attorney General Mike DeWine's office said Saturday that work at each of the crime scenes has been completed, and investigators are pursuing leads and processing evidence.
    
___
    
3:10 a.m.
    
Residents of the rural southern Ohio community of Piketon are rattled by a rare major crime that took the lives of eight members of a tight-knit family known as hard workers.
    
Authorities were still trying Sunday to find out who targeted the seven adults and teenage boy and why. Their bodies were found Friday at four different homes near Piketon, about 60 miles south of Columbus.
    
Kayla Hay says she's a former co-worker of one of the victims. She says she never heard 37-year-old Dana Rhoden say anything about being frightened or concerned about anything bad happening.
    
Outdoors shop owner Todd Beekman says at least one customer has come in to stock up on ammunition after hearing about the shootings.
    
Investigators say they've questioned more than 30 people.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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