Third defendant to be tried in murder case

October 30, 2012

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

The third defendant in the murder of Felipe Lopez, 24, of West Portsmouth, is scheduled to go on trial on Nov. 13 in the Scioto County Common Pleas courtroom of Judge William T. Marshall. Thomas Steinhauer, 47, of Portsmouth, is set to be tried on two counts of aggravated murder; one count of murder; aggravated arson; arson; three counts of tampering with evidence; kidnapping, and conspiracy to aggravated murder.

The charges are the result of a March 7 truck fire, in the 4400 block of Junior Furnace Powellsville Road, Franklin Furnace, in which authorities discovered Lopez’s body. He had been struck in the head with a hatchet several times, and stabbed six times, before being burned to death.

David Gerald, 37, of 1021 Center St., in Wheelersburg, was sentenced on Oct. 10, to life without the possibility of parole, plus 29 years, after prosecutors said he was the one who actually wielded the hatchet. Raymond Linkous, 35, also of Wheelersburg, was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole, plus 26 years on Sept. 12, in connection with the same death.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or at flewis@heartlandpublications.com