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Published: Monday, 7/16/2001

Trial ordered for defendant in murder-for-hire case

FREMONT - Judge Margaret Weaver of Sandusky County Common Pleas Court has ordered a defendant in a murder-for-hire case to stand trial July 23 for his alleged role.

Judge Weaver ruled Thursday that Tyrias Johnson, 26, Fremont, can be tried on charges of attempted aggravated murder, felonious assault, intimidation of a witness, and having a weapon under disability.

Mr. Johnson is accused of shooting Jarrod Skinner, 33, of Oak Harbor Sept. 25 after luring him to a Ballville Township farmhouse.

Mr. Johnson's attorney, Ron Wingate, had filed a motion to have his mental competency evaluated after Mr. Johnson turned down a plea offer last month.

Christy Claussen, 41, was sentenced April 19 to 13 years in prison for ordering the shooting. Claussen pleaded guilty in March under a plea bargain to complicity to attempted aggravated murder, for which she received 10 years, the maximum sentence, plus three years for a gun specification.

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