Crime & Law Enforcement Issues & Death Penalty/The Rhoden family murders Ohio
I am writing to solicit your opinion about a recent case that I have developed a fasciation with. I have always been fascinated by the criminal mind, serial killers etc. and enjoy watching true crime programs, reading true crime, have corresponded with inmates over the years etc. Becoming a forensic psychologist and possibly working as a criminal profiler for a big city police department or even the FBI was/is my dream job but it will never become a reality due to circumstances that are beyond my control. Anyway, the case I am referring to (I am sure that you have heard/read about it in the news, although I check on a regular basis for updates and there has been surprisingly little new information available about the case) is the mass murder of the Rhoden family in Piketon, Ohio. Seven of the victims were all members of the Rhoden family, with the exception of a young woman named Hanna Gilley who was engaged to a young man named Clarence Frankie Rhoden (who was also killed) and had a child with him. The states attorney general mentioned that they found three sophisticated marijuana grow operations at three of the four crime scenes and evidence of a potential cock fighting ring, but that they were looking at several different possibilities. There was mention of the potential involvement of a Mexican drug cartel, but that struck me as unlikely because typically they are involved in the trafficking of narcotics or methamphetamine, and could there really be that much profit to be made from selling marijuana? All the victims were shot execution style, most of them while they slept but some were shot multiple times and even beaten. Wouldn't that be indicative of some kind of a struggle? It took place in the wee hours of the night, and they lived in a rather remote, desolate area. The murders were very cold and calculating (not to mention very brutal) and authorities speculated that there was most likely more than one perpetrator involved and that it could have been a "professional" hit. For some reason I had a very strong emotional response to this particular case. I have been thinking about it a lot. I feel absolutely terrible for these people and want to see justice for them done. I just can't believe that someone can kill eight people, and then just walk off into the night like that. I thought they would have been apprehended by now! I am also bothered by the fact that there have been people basically implying that these people some how got what they deserved. How awful! What could they have done to deserve to be murdered in cold blood like that?! I am just astounded by how judgmental and downright cold hearted some people can be. I mean where is their compassion for goodness sake? A prominent local business man had offered a very generous reward for tips leading up to the apprehension and conviction of those involved, and then rescinded it when he learned of their connections to drugs. I thought that was so terrible! I mean, just because these people may not have been saints (none of us is perfect! If you were to dig into the backgrounds of any one of us most of us would have skeletons in our closet!). The victims were all very young, and included a young mom (just nineteen years old and sleeping with her newborn baby) when he was executed. From what I understand there were three children at the crime scenes, but none of them were physically harmed. One of the victims had two large dogs, and her father said in an interview that that they would have torn a stranger who tried to break in/do the family harm apart! The dogs were not harmed either, leading the remaining family members to believe that the perpetrators were somehow known to the family. Basically, I am curious as to who you think could have done this and what a possible motive could be? Do you think it is drug related? It was a small town, and everyone who knew these people said they were very kind hearted, generous people, although a little rough around the edges. Do you think that whoever did this will be caught? Maybe I just watch too much Criminal Minds of CSI or something, but I am just shocked that no one has been apprehended yet in connection with this horrible crime. These people were all so young and vibrant and full of life They had their whole lives ahead of them. Whoever did this needs to be brought to justice! Not to mention how scary it is to think that the person or persons capable of such inhumanity and utter brutality are still walking free among us , and could strike again anytime! Thank you for your time. I would really appreciate any insight you could offer me regarding this case, and also would appreciate it if you could direct me to further sources of information as I have read everything I could find on-line about the case. I don't know why this is affecting me so much given the fact that I have been reading about the likes of Charles Manson, Jeffery Dahmer, Richard Ramirez etc. since I was fourteen, and to be frank have heard of/seen worse. Thanks again for your time.
Dear Tiffany, Thank you for writing, but I know very little about the recent Pike County, Ohio Mass Murder. Given I am not fully updated on the case, I apologize for not being able to offer an opinion. I have only read an article or two and watched a couple brief news clips. Iím sorry I do not know enough about this tragedy. Although I know little about the case, I donít think the assailants were drug cartels. I think the attacker(s) were locals who did not want their town/community to be equated with the sale and production of marijuana. God Bless the Rhoden family and their loved ones. Respectfully, Dr. Nuccitelli