PDT Staff Writer
One of the questions being asked by people when a discussion about the July 12 shooting of Steve Holsinger in Wheelersburg is what would have been the Scioto County Sheriff’s Department response should one of the parties called before the shooting occurred?
Sheriff Deputies and detectives responded to a call that Holsinger, 33, of Wheelersburg, had been shot to death. Sheriff Marty Donini said Holsinger died from a gunshot wound administered by Tyler Staker, age 22, of Portsmouth. Donini said during this investigation his detectives learned that Staker and his father had gone to the location of the shooting and had been there for over an hour to repossess a piece of equipment that was purchased from their business that had not been fully paid for.
Now people are speculating as to what the protocol would have been should deputies have been called first. Again, as in the actions by the department the night of the shooting, Donini said there is a protocol, since these types of disputes come up now and then.
“If the individual that has the property doesn’t give it up voluntarily, then the other person is asked to leave and to contact their attorney, and get done what needs to be done, which normally is some sort of a court document or court order,” Donini said. “The court is going to have to make a judgment on who owes who. It’s not unusual, we get Writs of Execution. We get Writs of Possession all the time here.”
Donini stressed that everything needs to go through the legal system.
“We’re not going to be a collection agency. That’s not what we are,” Donini said. “We’ll try to accommodate people within reason. We have talked a lot about this. We have talked about the banks repossessing their vehicles, which is kind of different because it has a title. That’s the same process. If we find a vehicle at a location, we go with the bank. The bank usually sends a wrecker or a rep from the bank to get the vehicle. If there is any risk from the person who owes on that vehicle we don’t push the issue. They go back and get their Writ of Possession. That is a court order directing the Sheriff to go get it. If the vehicle is there on the property, and there’s no answer - yes, we let the wrecker driver take that vehicle if he has the paperwork showing he’s doing a repo.”
Donini said it needs to be made clear that his staff is not going to force entry, allow anyone else to force entry or to allow anyone to cause an argument to occur.
“People could argue - ‘I paid on that. I own that,’ and who am I to say they don’t,” Donini said. “But if that person voluntarily says, ‘yeah, I missed three payments, tell them to take it,’ we’ll let them take it. It’s only if consensual, unless we have a court order. If we have a court order we are not bringing the creditor with us. What we’ll do is take possession, and usually it’s filed by an attorney, we’ll take possession of the item, and we’ll call the attorney and tell them it’s available to pick up. Lots of times we bring them right here to the Sheriff’s Office.”
Scioto County Prosecutor Mark Kuhn indicated Friday he is most likely going to wait until all evidence including the complete autopsy is in before possibly filing anything with a Scioto County grand jury.
“I wouldn’t want to file something, then turn around and find out something that makes me wish I had waited until everything was in before filing,” Kuhn said.
Staker has not been arrested at this time, Donini said, but a case is being forwarded to the Scioto County Grand Jury for consideration.
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.