Tri-Village News

Homicide investigation continues

Outside help teaming with police on case

Police chief says investigators have 'a way to go' before they make an arrest

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The Grandview Heights Division of Police has three officers as well as its chief working full time on finding who killed Jennifer Cooke.

Cooke's body was discovered Aug. 11 in a second-floor bedroom in her home at 886 Woodhill Drive.

Officers had responded to her home on a well-being check. Cooke had been stabbed multiple times.

Police Chief David Wood gave an update on the investigation at the Sept. 3 city council meeting, although he said he could give few details.

"We have many, many leads and have conducted many interviews and search warrants," Wood said. "We still have a way to go" before an arrest will be made.

That arrest will be made, he said.

The case is complex and bigger than a small department such as Grandview could handle on its own, Wood said.

Grandview is working with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Columbus police on the case, he said.

The BCI "has stepped up more than I could have imagined," by running the crime scene, providing a lab team and "giving us more detectives, more detectives, more detectives," Wood said.

"They've given us anything we've needed," as have Columbus police, he said.

Several Columbus detectives are working on the case and the department has hired retired Columbus police detective Jeff Sacksteder to assist in coordinating the investigation, Wood said.

Before his retirement, Sacksteder led a team of Columbus detectives who investigated unsolved cases.

Grandview police officer Ryan Starns is serving as the department's lead detective on the case. Officer Janna Cohill and Sgt. Tom McCann have also been assigned full time to the case.

Every one of Grandview's 17 police officers have contributed to the investigation, Wood said.

Investigators are seeking the public's help, he said.

In particular, they are looking for information relating to suspicious activity someone may have witnessed from Aug. 8 to Aug. 12 in the area of Woodhill Drive.

Anyone with information should contact Grandview police at 614-488-7901 or make an anonymous call to Crime Stoppers at 614-461-8477.

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