Tuesday, Jun 19, 2018
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Teen suspect lied to police, officials allege

Detective: Michael Aaron Fay admitted to making up stories


Michael Aaron Fay, 17, walks into the courtroom during his arraignment as an adult on murder charges for the killings of Blaine and Blake Romes at the Putnam County Common Pleas on July 11.

The Blade/Amy E. Voigt
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OTTAWA, Ohio — A teenager charged in the murders of two brothers lied to authorities after he was arrested outside a Columbus gas station, according to a Putnam County sheriff’s detective and court documents.

Testifying on Tuesday in Putnam County Common Pleas Court, sheriff’s Detective Roy Sargent said Michael Aaron Fay initially told Columbus police officers that he had been with Blake Aaron Romes, 17, and Blaine Romes, 14, but abandoned the youngsters at a rest stop near Dayton after they left the home they shared with their mothers in Ottawa.

Mr. Fay, who was 17 when he and the Romes brothers went missing on May 9, also told authorities that he fled the home alone after men armed with guns entered the home and began shooting, Detective Sargent said.

However, the suspect eventually admitted that he had made up the stories, Detective Sargent testified Tuesday during a motion to suppress hearing.

Detective Sargent, who went to Columbus with an Ottawa police officer after the youth was arrested there, told Judge Randall Basinger that he talked to Mr. Fay for one hour and 12 minutes at the Columbus police department and the interview was recorded. He said the teen’s mother, Victoria Fay, had given approval to interview him without her being present.

Information obtained in the interview led to authorities finding the location of the boys’ bodies. An Amber Alert had been issued earlier in the day after Michelle Grothause returned home to find her sons, Mr. Fay, and a vehicle missing from their mobile home.

Mr. Fay, who turned 18 in August, was charged with delinquency in Juvenile Court and later certified to stand trial as an adult. He was indicted in July on two counts of aggravated murder, two counts of abuse of a corpse, one count of tampering with evidence, and one count of grand theft of a motor vehicle. A trial is scheduled to begin Nov. 4.

He is being held at the Wood County Juvenile Detention Facility in Bowling Green in lieu of $5 million bond.

During the hearing, Detective Sargent said he also talked to Mr. Fay on May 10 at the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office. He said he had been advised of his Constitutional rights prior to each interview.

The detective said the teenager was told he had the right to have an attorney and that he could either hire one or have a lawyer appointed by the court to represent him. He testified he obtained a written waiver from the teenager giving up his right for legal representation.

Judge Basinger said he would make a ruling within the next week on the defense motion to suppress statements Mr. Fay made to authorities.

Contact Mark Reiter at: markreiter@theblade.com or 419-724-6199.

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