Tuesday, March 4, 2003

Lifer faces death penalty in killing

Cellmate discovered strangled

By Sheila McLaughlin
The Cincinnati Enquirer

LEBANON - A 26-year-old man already serving life for a 1995 murder in Cuyahoga County now faces the death penalty in the Jan. 6 strangling of his cellmate at the Lebanon Correctional Institution.

A grand jury indictment released Monday in Warren County charged Daniel Hairston with aggravated murder in the death of Ronald Rogers, a 32-year-old convicted robber from Columbus.

Acting Prosecutor Rachel Hutzel said the two men, cellmates for about two weeks, were apparently embroiled in an argument over dust that had collected on Hairston's television.

She said Hairston is accused of cutting Rogers on the neck several times with a homemade shank before choking him with his arm.

A coroner ruled that Rogers died from asphyxiation.

Prosecutors sought death penalty specifications because Hairston had a prior aggravated murder conviction and because the recent homicide occurred in prison.

In other grand jury action:

• Charles Robinson Jr., 37, of Springboro, was charged with rape, sexual battery, domestic violence and corrupting another with drugs. he is accused of giving a 15-year-old girl the painkiller OxyContin and marijuana, then sexually assaulting her on May 23.

• Stuart Regan, 36, faces two counts of felony theft and one charge of forgery. The indictment alleges he posed as a Harlan Township employee to purchase a $2,200 computer system from a Mason computer shop and a $460 custom light bar from a Franklin welding firm. Authorities said Regan used fake purchase orders to obtain the merchandise from late September through mid-November.

Township fire officials were unaware of the purchases until they received the bills. Regan, who has served time in Ohio prisons for theft, attempted theft, receiving stolen property and forgery, remains at large. He also is wanted by police in Hamilton County and Indiana for similar incidents.

• Steven Lee Hall, 26, of Lebanon, is charged in the theft of two Tennessee Walkers from a Waynesville farm on Dec. 5.

The indictment came a day before Hall's sentencing in Clermont County today for the Thanksgiving theft of two other horses from a farm in Goshen Township. The horses were found and returned to their owners.

E-mail smclaughlin@enquirer.com

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