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Murder scene yields surprises



Published: Thu, August 13, 2009 @ 12:00 a.m.

More tests will be done on the two bodies discovered Tuesday evening.

By John W. Goodwin Jr.

YOUNGSTOWN — Police are trying to determine who is responsible for the deaths of two young men found in a torched car near the Mahoning River.

Jaron L. Roland, 20, of Fairmont Avenue and Darry B. Woods-Burt Jr., 19, of the city’s North Side, were found inside a burning car on West Avenue in the early evening hours Tuesday.

Youngstown Police Capt. Kenneth Centorame said the two men do not appear to be related, but did know each other.

According to police, a 42-year-old Canfield man went to the area of the Mahoning River near West Avenue at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday to meet a friend and do some fishing. The man noticed a late-model car near the river but did not initially pay any close attention.

After about 15 minutes of sitting near the lake, the man noticed the car had flames coming from the driver’s side door. The man, reports said, looked inside the car but did not see anything because of the smoke.

Youngstown firefighters responded at 6:52 p.m. and after extinguishing the fire found the body of the first man whose legs, feet and arms had been bound with duct tape.

The man also had a bag placed over his head also sealed with duct tape.

Police were called and began to go through the car when officers found the second body.

The second man’s hands, feet and legs had also been bound with duct tape and a sealed bag placed over his head.

The car was determined to have been a black 2007 Dodge Caliber that had been rented from the Enterprise rental agency on Rayen Avenue.

Dr. David Ohr, medical examiner for the Mahoning County Coroner’s office, said the car and scene by the lake did yield a few surprises for those investigating the situation.

“What surprised me at the scene was with two bodies in a burned car like this, you would expect to see blood. There was no blood,” he said.

Ohr said neither stab wounds nor bullet wounds could be found on either of the men. Burns were found on the men, but Ohr said those wounds did not cause their deaths.

Ohr said more tests will be done on the two bodies, but a preliminary cause of death has been established.

“My impression at this point and time is that these two boys were smothered to death,” he said. “I believe this is a homicide and they died by suffocation.”

jgoodwin@vindy.com


Comments

1hsisover(8 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Awful! These are someone's children, siblings, nephews, grandchildren, friends.
My prayers are with the families, the men who were fishing, the authorities left to piece together a disturbing puzzle.
For those responsible, He will determine your fate.

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2TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

What a horrible death. It'll be interesting to see what information the rental agency provides.

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3starofesther(168 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

This is evil and who did this is evil... Killing people like that.....Who would do such a horrible act...
this is not the first time...from time to time people have been found in the Youngstown area...and the way they died was horrible... Whoever did this...I pray for the families of the young men ...their lives...so young... and all that were involved.... to go fishing and happen on this....I also Pray who ever is doing these evil acts be caught and not be on the street...

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4Morrigan(83 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

How horrible for their families and loved ones. This was so viscious it makes you wonder about the person/s who did this. They must have no soul or conscience.

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5janeyblue(227 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Blimey! DRUGS! Yep sad...
And BTW no props for the wimpy fisherman who made no attenpt to get the men out! A real hero! NOT !
Watch em burn! And it was never stated if HE called the police...or someone else!
Still smelling of fish!

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6Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Thanks Vindy ! Good coverage of the story ! The killers must have been avoiding the gun specification and evidence from ballistic tests on the bullets . With a burned out car evidence will be skimpy . Let's hope they have slipped up somewhere on this well planned execution and get a jury with no sympathy on sentencing them to death .

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7dbinnc(51 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

From the little information provided so far, this is a terrible double murder. These 2 men I can only assume were into something they shouldn't have been, but regardless, noone should die like that.

Not to make light of the situation, but, to the posting from JennyChan, your correct, who goes fishing in the Mahoning River? And from Canfield no less. I can think of plenty of other places to fish closer to Canfield. This is the part of the story that is confusing

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8diamondm35(42 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

omg this is horrible, some of these young people out here have no regard for human life. This is terrible and my heart and prayers go out to the mother's, father's and families of these 2 young men, because in the end the family suffers.

RIP...

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9Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

JARON ROLAND

http://courts.mahoningcountyoh.gov/pa...

CARRYING CONCEALED

Number 50 2007 CR 00517
Filed 04/18/2007

http://courts.mahoningcountyoh.gov/pa...

IMPROPERLY HANDLING

Number 50 2008 CR 00041
Filed 01/10/2008

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10redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan, what was the outcome of these two cases against Roland? Wasn't clear to me from the court documents.

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11captainlinger(623 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

were both men listed as drivers when the car was rented from enterprise? it costs extra. maybe the other one wanted to drive and it got out of hand. car was on fire, huh? maybe it was a "firebird" or a "blazer".

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12Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

He was to monitored by CCA for three years .

CONCEALED WAS PLEA BARGAINED TO:

IMPROPER HANDLING OF A FIREARM IN A MOTOR VEHICLE

ON JANUARY 25, 2008 DEFENDANT'S SENTENCING HEARING WAS HELD. THE COURT FINDS THAT ON OCTOBER 10, 2007 THE DEFENDANT PLED GUILTY TO IMPROPER HANDLING OF A FIREARM IN A MOTOR VEHICLE

THE COURT FINDS THAT ON OCTOBER 10, 2007 THE DEFENDANT PLED GUILTY TO IMPROPER HANDLING OF A FIREARM IN A MOTOR VEHICLE O.R.C. 2923.16(B)(I)(2) F-4. THE COURT IMPOSES THREE (3) YEARS OF COMMUNITY CONTROL SANCTIONS TO BE MONITORED BY APA.

DEFENDANT SHALL OBEY ALL RULES AND REGULATIONS OF APA AND CCA. DEFENDANT IS ORDERED TO SELF REPORT TO CCA BY 3:00 PM ON FRIDAY, JANUARY 25, 2008. AFTER COMPLETION OF THE IN-HOUSE PROGRAM AT CCA, DEFENDANT IS ORDERED TO IMMEDIATELY REPORT TO APA

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13Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

The snappers are all in the Meander Reservoir .

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14scrooge(563 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Just thinning the herd 2 at a time.
Wonder if someone could use the car as a cash for clunkers.....................................?

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15TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

stan what's the point of posting their records?

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16gmann415(268 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

it seems to me that these two guys got what they had comming to them. thugging and gangbanging doesnt seem to pay any more. tome for all you other gangbanging gun toting drug dealers jneed to find a new line of work.

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17Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TB:

"stan what's the point of posting their records?"

Public information that shows criminal activity .

Perhaps someone can come forward with information on who may have had a reason to execute these two people .

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18copswife(25 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

This is a horriable thing that happened to two young men. No one should have to die like that. On the other hand both of these boys were into alot of things that a 19 and 20 year old should not had been in. The police know alot more about the two of these boys then the public knows. One of the young men was the boy last year that was brutally shot over a bad drug deal gone wrong. He had one lung and almost did not make it last year. He obveiously did not learn his lesson the first time he came in contact with death. The boys were cousins. The paper posted they did not seem to be related. Their mothers are sisters. Who ever did this will be brought to justice. And for the two men fishing, they were just in the wrong place at the wrong time when they found them. When is it going to stop. Just that same after noon a six year old was shot in the chest sitting in a car on the South side. My husband was on duty Tuesday and took the call. What a shame people have no respect for life.

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19joydav(41 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Everyone talking about these kids records after this, I hope that you will never be in the need for compassion.

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20saysithowitiz(98 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Why is everyone so hung up on the fisherman? Does it matter where he's from or where he goes fishing? A lot of people in Canfield fish and a lot of people fish in the Mahoning River....get over it! I fish at McKelvey lake for God's sake, never been a suspect in any crimes committed there.

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21peacetoall(3 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

this is something deeper and darker than retaliation....like out of a movie.....what comes to mind is "goodfellas" ....not good for the city and may these kids rest in peace!! Also to the families, I send love and support!!

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22gmann415(268 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan, again i thank you. you really know how to bring the truth into light. as far as those who are crying oh boo hoo these poor kids, these punks wernt kids. they were thugs, dope dealing gun toting gangbangers. im sure these punks got what they had comming to them. by the looks of it, im sure they caused some other family grief. its been said many many time. you live by the gun you die by the gun.

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23Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

joydav:

"Everyone talking about these kids records after this, I hope that you will never be in the need for compassion."

You can bet that a total stranger did not kill these two kids . Their records may indicate what they were involved in that would have led to this crime .
I have plenty of compassion for their families but none for those involved in their execution .

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24redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

For those of you that are so worried about their records being exposed. This is the first thing the police will be looking at for clues to what these guys were involved in and with whom. I got a gut feeling these were not choir boys!

In the story on Thursday a aunt stated that one of the men received a phone call and went to meet with a "friend". When he did not return when expected, the other guy left in the rental car to find him.

#1 It appears that the first guy knew the caller.
#2 The second guy knew where to find him.
#3 Phone calls are traceable. Land line, cell, pay phone?

If anyone will talk "not likely but maybe for once" the police will be able to put it together.

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25MinisterD(25 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Regardless of what these 2 were involved in, no one deserves to die the way they did. There are truly evil people that leave messages like "Thinning the Herd" and Blazer vs Firebird. Either you are totally desensitized to the value of ALL human life, or you yourselves are dregs of your own society. Bitter old men who think they have the moral high ground.

Last time I checked, God had more compassion for the publican than the Pharisee.

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26Ytownboy(142 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

You are right Stan, this was a well organized hit, done by pros, there was a reason behind it.

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27captainlinger(623 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

minister d,

my apologies, it could have been a sunfire.

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28TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

well said minister D

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29Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TB:

Do you feel that the executioner should get the death penalty when caught and tried ?

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30TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I'm not a big fan of putting anyone to death. I think there should be a penalty, but as far as I can see, the death penalty doesn't really serve as a deterrent. I also don't feel that I'm the one to judge life or death. Being a religious man Stan, I'm sure you'd agree that we're not fit to judge life or death.

A friend of my family's was a YPD officer who was shot and killed downtown years back. He was a friend from when I was in my adolescence. Seeing his killer die didn't bring him back.

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31redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TB, you state that the death penalty is not a deterrent. No, when a person is convicted and then sits on death row for 15 years or more trying to figure out how to work the system then it doesn't work. I want to see hard evidence if they are sentenced to death but if that is in place then I want to see them executed in 6 months or less. When killing someone today might mean that you may not see the leaves on the trees next spring it may deter more than a few. Not all of course but worth a field trial.

If you want to sign up to support some dirtbag for the rest of his life then go for it. We will sign you up for one that lucked out and got life. I say lucked out cause with life there is always a chance that some bleeding heart judges will overturn the death penalty. Guess I don't have to analyze whether the chances improved since late January.

I am against lethal injection, they don't get to suffer. I consider that as a violation of my rights.

Yes I know, most of them have remorse and find Jesus (didn't know he was lost). Yea, most of them do, if not on their own, then on the advice of their attorney.

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32Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I remember Paul Durkin who was killed on the Northside a while back .

William T. Dawson A200473 was the killer . He must have been paroled as Ohio's prisons don't have him listed . Too bad that he wasn't put on death row .

Officer Durkin was 34 years old when he was murdered by Dawson, married for six years, and had a 22-month-old daughter. He was killed on September 22, 1987.

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33Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TRACKED DAWSON DOWN
He is still in prison .

http://www.drc.state.oh.us/OffenderSe...

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34sistersun(49 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

My love and prayers go out to the families of these two men.I see theres alot of people so opinionated about what they assumed had happened,that is just that,their opinion.Only God knows the truth.Let's pray for the other people in our community so this kind of thing won't continue to happen.For the smart asses,find something else to do!!!!!!! Those were someone's children. RIP

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35TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

His name was Mike Hartzell. Martin did kill himself in prison, but it didn't bring solace to Mike's family and friends. There was no way he was getting out of prison. He sneered and laughed during the trial, but it still doesn't change the fact the Mike is gone. It doesn't erase the hurt and pain.

I understand calls for justice, etc. I'm just not so quick to believe that I'm qualified to determine when any human life should be extinguished. That's between a man and his maker.

"I want to see hard evidence if they are sentenced to death but if that is in place then I want to see them executed in 6 months or less. When killing someone today might mean that you may not see the leaves on the trees next spring it may deter more than a few. Not all of course but worth a field trial."

The death penalty hasn't ever been a deterrent. There hasn't been any correlation between a drop in the type of crimes punishable by death and the death penalty.

The problem with your "experiment" is that the appeals process exists for a reason. Examples of death row exonerations (especially with the ability to use DNA evidence now that was not available) are too numerous for me to support rushed sentencing. Witnesses make mistakes. If you need specific cases, I can give them. When a man spends 20 years on death row, appealing his sentence repeatedly and is INNOCENT, that is totally unacceptable any way you slice it.

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36TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

and I've heard other victims' family members echo what I'm saying. you can't speak for everyone, and I've never claimed to. Justice isn't legitimized euthanasia. Justice is righting a wrong.

"society is much better knowing dirtbags are off the street." So life in prison does not accomplish this?

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37redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

"So life in prison does not accomplish this?"

Yes it does but it is a lot cheaper this way. Why should we have to support him. This dirtbag might of lived a long time!

Now if you want to signup to support some new best buddy, go for it.

An eye for an eye! He took a life so he gives his life! Can't think of any other sayings at the moment.

It is all good!!! He will be forgotten by the end of this week!

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38TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

"Yes it does but it is a lot cheaper this way"

So what, in dollars, is the value of a human life?

"Now if you want to signup to support some new best buddy, go for it."
I don't understand this at all.

Love thy neighbor. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. There's a couple quotes you can use.

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39Doretha(1 comment)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I've never been so disqusted with the ignorance of people as I am now. I went to school with both of the boys and were good boys. They played sports went to all their classes and graduated. They may have gotten mixed up in some things but they weren't out killing people. By putting JaRon's record on showing he got caught riding with a gun is not really telling anything. He could have felt he needed it for protection and its bad that anybody especially someone as young as him felt he needed to protect himself like that just shows how bad Youngstown has gotten. I bet if he would have had that gun he wouldn't be dead right now. And for the person who put how he got a call, its sounding like he was getting set up. He must have figured it was somebody he could trust to go "unprotected" like that. Its just sad.

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40TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

good point Doretha. I've seen the same thing happen regarding the gun and the need for protection.

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41redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TB, you say love thy neighbor. Okay, fine. Now let's think about this dirtbag that was executed today. This was not a situation where in a fit of rage one person killed another. This is a case where this person agreed to do a job for another person. Kinda like I will put new siding on your house for x number of dollars. In this case though, the job was to kill one person and by the way, if there is anyone around that can identify me I will just go ahead and kill them also. Of course if that person was you he wouldn't of killed you since you would tell him that you know he didn't mean it and his daddy didn't love him but you do!

Does this person need to have any chance of one day getting out of prison. Don't say that couldn't happen! He supposedly showed remorse at the end. Like I said before, if he had never been caught, do you think he would be remorseful today. Yea, you probably do. If you want to shed a tear over this scumbag, be my guest. Nothing more to say

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42TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

You posted your quotes and I rebutted them. If you can't handle someone challenging your assertions, then this probably isn't the best forum for you...especially if you're going to rant and run.

I have thought about it. I don't love them man, but I have a basic respect for human life (even if he and you don't.) I also don't feel that I'm qualified to make a determination as to when to end a human's life. I wonder what qualifies you to do so.

I'm not shedding any tears tonight for Getsy. I can abide the decision to execute him even if it's not what I would choose.

Since you didn't address my query I'll repost this.

"Yes it does but it is a lot cheaper this way"

So what, in dollars, is the value of a human life?

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43TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

The real question that you left out is "does the suffering of the family, etc. abate with the execution of the murderer?"

I know in a personal example that the death of the murderer didn't bring comfort to the family of the victim I knew.

To me, an acceptable level of error when dealing with a death penalty (or even life terms of imprisonment) is 0%.

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44redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TB, sorry for not answering your query. Let me do it now.
Your question was, "what is the value of a human life?"
For someone that would agree to kill someone else strictly for money and also anyone that might be able to identify him.... about the price of the drugs it took to kill him, if that!

You stated that for some victims families seeing the individual executed does not bring comfort. Yes, it does not bring back their loved one but most are comforted in knowing that the dirtbag will never have the opportunity of seeing freedom again. That is important now more than ever with the direction our courts are starting to lean toward. Also, a lot of the families like the guy here that was the actual target are not shedding a tear.

To comment on prodgodq's post. I do believe that before the death penalty is administered that there is hard evidence that the condemed is guilty, DNA, reliable witnesses, fingerprints etc. not just probable cause.

Still think you should volunteer to support one of these inmates that gets off death row due to a technicality like a misspelled word in the trial transcript or something like that.

Do you have any more concerns.

ps: I think Florida has one scheduled for 6PM.
Been playing the court system for 25 years

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45TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Who said anything about volunteering?

So you're saying some human lives are worth more than others? How do we make that determination then?

As I said before, I'm friends with some people whose son was murdered. The murderer killed himself in prison. They took no comfort from his death, since it didn't bring back their son and the potential life he was going to live. I can understand the victim not shedding a tear, but it doesn't bring his mother back does it. A life sentence is a life sentence.

If your problem is with the courts, then what do you propose is the solution? Keep building more prisons? We already have a higher incarceration rate than other countries. That to me speaks volumes about the fault in the system. Apparently, simply locking people up or executing people isn't a deterrent.

"I do believe that before the death penalty is administered that there is hard evidence that the condemed is guilty, DNA, reliable witnesses, fingerprints etc. not just probable cause."
That's not true. There have been cases of people being exonerated after they have been executed. There have been cases of people on death row awaiting execution who have been exonerated. There have been cases of people with life sentences being exonerated. The system is hardly foolproof.

We've been executing people without the benefit of modern scientific techniques for some time now.
Since 1973, 133 people in 26 states have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence. Eight of those were in Ohio alone. There have been over 240 people released as DNA has shown their innocence.
If you compare those numbers to the actual numbers of people on death row, it's an uncomfortably high error rate. If you compare those numbers to the numbers of people actually executed over the same time period, the error rate is scary.

http://www.exonerate.org/facts/
http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/innoc...

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46redvert(2100 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Who said anything about volunteering!!! If you read my post, you will see that I suggested that YOU volunteer to support one of these dirtbags since you seem to love them so much.

I wrote "I do believe that before the death penalty is administered that there is hard evidence that the condemed is guilty, DNA, reliable witnesses, fingerprints etc. not just probable cause."

Your reply was "That's not true." Yes that is true, that is exactly what I said.

You asked if I wanted to build more prisons. No, each dirtbag on death row that we execute opens up another bed. I am trying to keep the costs down.

This has been fun but I cannot follow your train of thought so you can have the last word, I am done here.

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47TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I see how it is. Say what you want and run away when someone challenges your poorly thought out ideas.

I understand you said I should volunteer. Talk about making a mental leap. At no time did I say I had an interest in this. If you are assuming that I would because I'm not a fan of killing innocent people, then your assumption is incorrect.

Since you didn't answer this question, let me repost it.

You again say "I am trying to keep the costs down."
I asked earlier...
"So you're saying some human lives are worth more than others? How do we make that determination then?"

Let's try this. I'll break things down for you since you're having trouble.
YOU SAY--
"I do believe that before the death penalty is administered that there is hard evidence that the condemed is guilty, DNA, reliable witnesses, fingerprints etc. not just probable cause."
Your reply was "That's not true." Yes that is true, that is exactly what I said."

This is the part you have trouble with. Just because you believe something doesn't make it true. It would be nice for you if that were the case, but I hate to tell you the real world doesn't work that way. At one time or another, I believed that Santa Clause came down my chimney on Christmas Eve to deliver my presents. Then I grew up and realized that belief was not true and that my parents were the ones placing my presents under the tree.

I just gave you examples of how what you claimed was NOT true. I provided you with specific facts on the topic. That means you are WRONG in your assertion. It's okay to be wrong. We are all wrong sometimes. I was wrong earlier today in a conversation. Part of being a grown-up is admitting when you are wrong. If you are having trouble seeing why you are wrong, I will break it down a little further. THERE ARE ACTUAL, REAL LIFE CASES INVOLVING HUMAN BEINGS IN JAIL ON DEATH ROW WHO WERE NOT GUILTY. THEIR INNOCENCE WAS PROVEN AFTER THEY HAD ALREADY BEEN CONVICTED. THEY WERE RELEASED. This is what, in everyday parlance, we call a fact.

"I do believe that before the death penalty is administered that there is hard evidence that the condemed is guilty, DNA, reliable witnesses, fingerprints etc. not just probable cause"
This is what, in everyday parlance, we call a belief or even an opinion. It is an example of a wrong belief, because evidence exists to show it is wrong.

Perhaps you cannot follow my train of thought because you do not know the difference between fact/belief(opinion).

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48steelerman09(111 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Take a life and are convicted (or by admission), you should go straight from the courtroom to the chair. If we actually did these things, crime would be down. People who don't have anything, ADMITTEDLY, do things to be put back in prison so they have 3 squares a day and a rack to sleep on......Don't even wait....Courtroom to the chair or table. This will eventually have to be the way things go!

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49YSUgrad2004(5 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

My heart goes out to Miss Ursula and her family! May they rest in peace. I don't care what kids get into or experiment with this is just wrong.
God bless the family.

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50steelers6(13 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

My prayers go out to the family. Attending two funerals in two days was tuff.

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51dlrwrr2(3 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Why is it that when a murder happens in youngstown no one is willing to look into the killing? When the police are called they do not have a good response time and when they get to the scene all they do is write a report of what they see. If their response time was better, maybe these crimes would be on the decline. Whoever did this ugly thing to these boys they will get it done back to them 10 times greater than what they did.

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52andersonathan(671 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

From what i read about the story. You don't end up that way from being a angle. And tossing up past criminal records just shows they were caught at one time or another.

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53theinspector(1 comment)posted 5 years, 3 months ago

unfortunately, I came across these kids on the northside before, what a bad way to go. They where involved in some pretty bad stuff including robbing other people.. They got caught up in a world they were not prepared for, thus underestimating the trouble they got themselves in.. they where not good kids, nor smart for that matter, they coulda done so much better. I feel sorry for their families though. This was likely to send a message. my guess, they robbed or failed to pay back the wrong person.. trust, this was not random.

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