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Published: Tuesday, 3/29/2011 - Updated: 4 years ago

2 charged in slaying of Findlay woman, 24

Victim found on tracks of CSX bridge over river


Vera Jo Reigle Vera Jo Reigle
FINDLAY — Two people are charged with aggravated murder in the slaying of a Findlay woman whose body was left on train tracks over the Blanchard River.

Daniel Bixler, 21, of Tiffin and an unidentified 17-year-old Fostoria girl were arrested sometime after the body was found around 2 a.m. Sunday. The girl is being held at the Seneca County Juvenile Detention Facility; Mr. Bixler is being held at the Hancock County jail without bond.

The body of 24-year-old Vera Jo Reigle was found by train operators on the tracks of a CSX trestle bridge over the Blanchard River, near the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., bridge, at 2:07 a.m., Findlay police said.

Preliminary autopsy results suggest Ms. Reigle suffered multiple blunt and sharp trauma wounds unrelated to the train, Hancock County Coroner Mark Fox said. The autopsy was performed Monday by the Lucas County Coroner's Office.

Dr. Fox said the wounds were "all over" Ms. Reigle's body.

Ihe investigation is ongoing, police said.

Before police officially announced the arrests, a Facebook page to honor Ms. Reigle, "Speak out for Vera Jo Reigle Messersmith she deserves justice," had been established.

Several people on the page said Ms. Reigle was a mother to a new baby and that she had a "hard life."

The page's description states Ms. Reigle was "brutally murdered" and asks people that if the victim were their daughter wouldn't they want someone to "speak where her voice can no longer be heard … "

Ms. Reigle was born July 11, 1986, to Verna Garner and Willard Reigle, in Findlay.

Attempts to reach Ms. Reigle's parents were unsuccessful.

Danielle Reigle Olsen wrote on the Facebook page that she was the victim's cousin and, although they did not talk much, she is "sad that she is gone," and whoever committed the crime "needs to pay dearly."

Daniel M. Bixler Daniel M. Bixler
Heather Beltz wrote that she went to school with Ms. Reigle, describing her as a "sweet girl."

Those who didn't know Ms. Reigle also wanted to show support.

"I didn't know her but I hope that whoever did this is brought to justice," Joe Brownawell wrote. "I hope they get what is coming to them for doing this … awful death to her."

Desta Bixler, who said she is related to Mr. Bixler, wrote that she has more information than "anyone would think," but when contacted by The Blade, she said she was not allowed to talk to reporters.

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