Ohio Family Killings: Marijuana Grow Operations Found at 3 of the 4 Crime Scenes

iStock/Thinkstock(CINCINNATI) -- Ohio's Attorney General says marijuana grow operations were found at three of the four places where eight relatives were shot dead in "execution type" killings.

Authorities did not provide further details.

Attorney General Mike DeWine told ABC News earlier that authorities still do not have a suspect description or motive in the Friday killings, saying the suspect or suspects took several steps to cover up their tracks and remove any possible evidence that would help police track them down.

He says authorities have received more than 100 tips so far and they are following up on all of them.

"These were pre-planned, pre-meditated execution-type killings," DeWine told ABC News Sunday. "Four different homes. A case like this is going to take some time."

The victims were all members of the Rhoden family, officials said Saturday. They were identified as: Hannah Gilley, 20; Christopher Rhoden, Sr., 40; Christopher Rhoden, Jr., 16; Clarence "Frankie" Rhoden, 20; Dana Rhoden, 37; Gary Rhoden, 38; Hanna Rhoden, 19; and Kenneth Rhoden, 44.

Seven of the victims were found in three homes along the same road in Peebles, a small village about 70 miles east of Cincinnati. The eighth victim was found later than the others in nearby Piketon, officials said.

Some of the victims appeared to have been killed in their sleep and were found shot to death in their beds, DeWine said. One victim, who appeared to be a mother, was killed lying in bed with a 4-day-old baby, he said.

Three young children -- the 4-day-old baby, a 6-month-old baby and a 3-year-old -- were found unharmed at the various shooting locations, said Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader.

At a news conference this afternoon DeWine described the killings as "a sophisticated operation."

"They thought this thing through," DeWine said.

Cincinnati-area businessman Jeff Ruby has offered $25,000 for information that leads to the gunman's arrest, officials said Saturday.

Investigators also released 911 calls that recorded family members finding their relatives dead inside their homes.

One woman called 911, sounding frantic and out of breath, telling a dispatcher she had found blood throughout her brother-in-law's house.

"I think my brother-in-law's dead," she said. "There's blood all over the house."

She then said it looked like someone else was dead there, too, before weeping into the phone.

In another 911 call, a man said: "I just found my cousin with a gunshot wound."

"Is he alive?" the dispatcher asked.

"No, no," the caller said.

Sharon Fulton, the wife of a pastor at the Union Hill Church, said there was shock within the small community of Peebles, which had a population of 1,782 at the time of the 2010 census.

"When one hurts, we all hurt," she said.


ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Check Also

California anticipates much-needed rain this week after catastrophic wildfires

California anticipates much-needed rain this week after catastrophic wildfiresGoogle Earth(NEW YORK) -- Ravaged by a slew of deadly wildfires in recent days, northern California is set to get a bit of relief this week in the form of rain.

A storm system is expected to move over the Pacific Northwest later this week and the trailing cold front will most likely bring some much-needed rain to northern California between Thursday and Friday, according to ABC meteorologists.

"It will rain a bit but not enough to fully douse the blazes," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Ken Clark said in a statement Tuesday. "The biggest advantage to firefighters will be the increase in humidity and lower temperatures."

Massive wildfires have charred more than 245,000 acres of land statewide in the past week, killing at least 41 people and destroying thousands of homes, according to authorities.

Firefighters were battling about a dozen wildfires as of late Tuesday evening, although most of them were more than halfway contained.

“The weather today will be warm with low humidity, which will continue to challenge firefighters, but only light winds are forecast,” CalFire said in a statement on Tuesday. “A chance of precipitation is expected to arrive later in the week, bringing relief from the dry conditions.”

The northern parts of the Golden State, which has bared the brunt of the fire damage, is forecast to see an influx of cloudy, cooler and wetter weather later in the week, according to AccuWeather.

Spotter from Los Osos was reporting sprinkles from this high level moisture. Dry at lower levels. Rain evaporates. Also called "Virga" #cawx pic.twitter.com/sgxj3bdXZQ

— NWS Los Angeles (@NWSLosAngeles) October 18, 2017

However, a return of dry air, heat and areas of gusty winds could once again raise the wildfire danger early next week, meteorologists said.

Separately, a band of moisture, referred to as Atmospheric River by weather experts, is currently stretching between Asia and North America. It’s expected to bring several storm systems into many parts of the Pacific Northwest through the rest of the week.

The first of these storms have already hit the Pacific Northwest with wind gusts of between 40 and 74 mph.

A number of wind warnings and flood watches are in effect in the western and northern parts of the U.S. ahead of the storm.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.