Grove City police beat: March 25

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Grove City Division of Police officers responded at 1:22 p.m. March 17 to the Motel 6 at 1900 Stringtown Road on a report of an unresponsive woman.

The victim, Misty Davis, 45, of Marshall, West Virginia, was pronounced dead at the scene from an apparent strangulation.

Police Beat

Motel staff had found Davis was not breathing when they entered her room for cleaning.

Davis was lying face up in a bed with a belt around her neck, according to the police report.

Police identified Jason Goundry, 48, as a suspect. Goundry, who had a relationship with Davis, had been staying with her, according to police. Davis had told police in West Virginia that Goundry had threatened to kill her.

Goundry stole Davis' vehicle and left the motel, according to police.

Officers filed a warrant for his arrest for the theft. His listed address was the YMCA Men's Shelter at 40 W. Long St.

Later that night, officers went to Goundry's room at the shelter, knocked on the door and ordered him to leave the room, according to the report. They heard Goundry yelling at them. Before they could enter the room and arrest him, Goundry jumped out the window of the multi-story building, according to the report.

Officers and medics attempted to resuscitate Goundry, but he was pronounced dead.

Goundry had pleaded guilty to an aggravated-robbery charge in June 2016 in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas. He was sentenced to four years in prison and was on parole. He was released from the Warren Correctional Institution on May 31, 2020, according to online records from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

In other recent Grove City police reports:

• An officer responded to a property on the 3700 block of Thistlewood Drive on a report of thefts from two vehicles parked there.

The work vans were owned by a Washington Court House business. The owner of the company told police that at least $4,000 worth of tools and equipment had been stolen from the vehicles. He still was compiling a list of stolen items at the time of the report.

A third work van parked at the site and owned by a Mount Vernon man also was broken into. The victim was aware of the incident but had not been able to determine if anything had been stolen.

• Dispatchers advised officers at 6:02 p.m. March 18 that a robbery had just occurred at a hotel on the 4000 block of Jackpot Road and that the robber had left the area in a vehicle with the victim chasing after him in his car.

The suspect vehicle was reported to have exited I-270 onto Broadway and was traveling northbound. 

An officer arrived in the area and observed the vehicle turning onto Blue Rock Boulevard. The officer activated his lights and siren and pursued the vehicle. As the officer approached the suspect vehicle, the driver increased his speed. Because of the time of day, rainy weather, road conditions, the residential location and the suspect's speed, the officer turned off his lights and siren and stopped his chase.

The suspect vehicle exited the neighborhood area and continued northbound on U.S. Route 62.

The officer continued to patrol the area to try to locate the vehicle. While doing so, he located the victim also driving and looking and instructed him to pull into a nearby parking lot. 

As he began to speak with the victim, the officer observed the suspect vehicle traveling southbound on U.S. Route 62 toward Alkire Road. He reported the sighting, and Grove City, Franklin Township and Columbus police arrived to search for the vehicle.

The victim, a 36-year-old Columbus man, told the officer he had been hanging out with the suspect, who was an old friend, at the hotel. He said the suspect pulled out a handgun. He reached into the victim's pocket, grabbed his wallet and removed the money from the wallet. The victim said he had about $3,000 in his wallet.

While speaking with the victim, the officer was notified that the suspect had crashed his vehicle on the 2200 block of Big Run Avenue and fled on foot.

Officers searched the area but were unable to find the suspect, who was identified as a 29-year-old Grove City resident.

A Grove City police detective arrived at the scene and took over the investigation.

No arrests had been in the case.

• The CEO of a business on the 1900 block of Ohio Drive told police March 19 a company trailer valued at $2,800 had been stolen. The trailer was last seen March 5.

• The area loss-prevention manager for a company told police March 19 that an employee at the Grove City store on Stringtown Road apparently had stolen $3,670 in cash from the store. The money was taken between Nov. 1, 2020, and Feb. 23, 2021. The suspect was a member of the store's management team, according to the report. 

The loss-prevention manager said his supervisor had interviewed the suspect March 12 and the suspect admitted to taking the money.

Officers had not yet interviewed the suspect at the time of the report.

• An employee of a Westerville company told police March 16 that several items belonging to the company had been stolen from the company's storage unit on the 4000 block of Marlane Drive.

The stolen items included two microwave ovens, a garbage disposal, tools, appliance parts, a garage-door opener and plumbing fixtures. Total loss was $1,676.

• A Reynoldsburg man reported his car valued at $4,000 had been stolen March 16 from the parking lot of a store on the 1600 block of Stringtown Road. The man said he had arrived at the store about 11:30 a.m. and spent only about 15 minutes inside. The car was gone when he returned. He said he believes he might have dropped his keys because he no longer had possession of them when he left the store.

• A Texas man reported numerous tools had been stolen March 11 from his work truck while he was staying at a hotel on the 1700 block of Buckeye Place. Total loss was $4,580.

– Alan Froman/ThisWeek