Rafferty was 16 at the time of the crimes and therefore not eligible for the death penalty. He was sentenced to life in prison without parole and plans to appeal his conviction. Jurors had unanimously recommended that Beasley be sentenced to death. Under Ohio law, the judge had the option of imposing the death penalty or sentencing him to life in prison.
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Davis as well as friends and family of the men killed were allowed to speak after the death sentence was imposed. He also told Beasley he planned to attend his execution. He escaped from the direct firing line but was shot in his arm before running into the nearby woods.
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For seven hours he hid in the undergrowth, before escaping to a nearby house where he called the police. The police didn't initially believe his story and were convinced it was a drug deal gone wrong, but then Davis showed them the Craigslist advert. As they began to investigate and the local media got wind of the horrifying story, they got a call from Pauley's sister who believed her brother may also have been a victim. Law enforcement started searching the secluded site and found his grave, as well as an empty plot which they believed had been prepared for Davis. But Beasley wasn't done yet - he decided to kill again and arranged to meet another person from Craigslist.
Tim Kern, a year-old street cleaner, had just lost his job and wanted money to support his two sons. Beasley shot him dead behind an abandoned shopping centre before burying his body in the nearby shrubbery. After his final sick murder, police arrested Beasley while he was walking down the street in broad daylight. Rafferty - who had been in awe of Beasley as his own father became absent - gave evidence which helped lead them to Geiger and Kern's bodies.
In November , Rafferty was was found guilty of three counts of aggravated murder and one count of attempted murder and was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 70 years. He packed up all his stuff—his model trains, his books and DVDs, his Jeff Gordon T-shirts and posters, his Christmas lights, and the small box containing the ashes of his old cat, Maxwell Edison—and hit the road.
It was not far from Marietta, Ohio, where he was supposed to meet his new employer at a Bob Evans for breakfast the next morning.
He called his sister, who told him that she loved him and said to call back the next day. Give me an exact location so I can come down Saturday and we can hang out. The next day came and went with no call from Pauley. Maul tried him on the walkie-talkie, but there was no response. Yes, everything was all right, Jack told Maul. Yes, he would pass on the message when he saw him the next day. But a few more days went by without a call, so Maul dialed Jack again. This time Jack said that when he showed up at the farm that day, Pauley had packed all his things in a truck and said he was leaving.
There was no way, Maul thought to himself, that Pauley would take off for Pennsylvania without telling him. They kept their walkie—talkies on their bedside tables and called each other before they even got up to brush their teeth in the morning. When she and her brother were 14, their mother got emphysema. She typed the name into Google and found the local paper, The Daily Jeffersonian. The article cited the Noble County sheriff, Stephen Hannum.
Deb called his office right away.
After picking up Scott Davis five days earlier, Hannum and his team had been following up on his strange story, but not all that urgently. Although no one said it explicitly at the time, a sudden drop-off like that meant a missing person, and that in turn meant there might be a body. They also sent a crew with cadaver dogs back to the woods where Davis had been shot.
A few hours before dark, the investigators found a patch of disturbed soil overlaid with tree branches. They began digging with their hands, until they found blood seeping up from the wet earth and a socked foot appeared. The body they discovered was facedown, and one of the items they removed from it was a corded black-leather bracelet with a silver clasp.
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Mackie telephoned Deb and described the bracelet. The investigators also found a second grave, this one empty. They later learned it had been meant for Davis.
Now the investigators knew they were looking for a murderer. By early the next week, they had identified the man in the breakfast-meeting footage as a local named Richard Beasley.
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The landlord called Geiger and kept him on the line as investigators traced the call. Rafferty later told his mother that before he left school that day, he had found a girl he liked and kissed her, even though her boyfriend was nearby. He was right to worry: that evening, police arrived with a warrant, and he was taken into custody. R ichard beasley, aka Jack, was born in and raised in Akron primarily by his mother, who worked as a secretary at a local high school, and his stepfather.
Over the years, he worked as a machinist, but his job record was interrupted by spells in jail. He served from to in a Texas prison on burglary charges and, starting in , another seven years in a federal prison for a firearms offense. When he went on trial for the Craigslist murders, the photo favored by newspapers made him look deranged, with wild eyebrows and hair and a crumpled mouth.
But during the trial, with his white hair combed and his beard trimmed, he looked almost like Santa Claus, especially when he smiled. After the accident, he started taking opiates for back and neck pain and stopped working steadily. So when, at age 8, Brogan Rafferty said he wanted to start going to church on Sundays, his dad said it was okay for him to go with Beasley.
It was only church, after all. And Michael Rafferty, a single parent who was working long shifts at the time, hated waking up early on Sundays anyway. Beasley was a mentor to Rayna and her brother, Rayna recalls. Around , Beasley founded what he told friends was a halfway house to help reform addicts, runaways, and prostitutes.
Beasley would cruise the streets of Akron at night, picking up strays and bringing them back to the house. If they were in trouble with the law, he would vouch for them in court, saying they had turned their lives over to Christ. A few times, Rafferty asked Beasley whether they could go out and look for his mother, Yvette, who Rafferty always worried was in trouble. But there was another side to Beasley—and to his halfway house. Soon, instead of being their savior, he became their pimp.
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He began advertising their services online and driving them to meet johns. Saller said she never saw Beasley get violent, although she added that she was nonetheless afraid of him. In February , Beasley was arrested in Ohio on a variety of drug-related charges. While he was in jail, investigators were building a prostitution case against him. He was released on bond in mid-July.
But after he failed to check in with authorities in Texas, where he was still on parole for his earlier crimes, the state issued a warrant for his arrest, and he was deemed on the run from the law. Beasley wanted to disappear. Whereas once he had preyed on prostitutes, now he would target a member of a new class of vulnerable citizens drifting at the margins of society: unemployed, middle-aged white men.
And each time we get a little bit more. But tonight it all needs to come out, percent.
All right? One week after arresting Brogan Rafferty, investigators made a deal with their year-old suspect.