NEWARK — On Monday, the body of Fredonia resident Hershel Roberts was found in his home, and the Licking County Sheriff’s Office has been investigating the circumstances of his death. Ken Oswalt, Licking County Prosecutor, said foul play was suspected “because of the injuries to the body, the location of weapons and the manner in which the body was positioned.”
Deputies launched a search for a person believed to have information about the shooting.
On Wednesday, the investigation led to Kokomo, Ind. The person of interest was located there, Oswalt said, having been arrested early Wednesday morning on charges of theft of firearms. A relative of Roberts’ told law enforcement on Monday that several guns were missing from the Roberts residence.
Sheriff’s detectives, Oswalt said, were physically in Kokomo on Wednesday “recovering various evidence and interviewing certain witnesses.”
On Thursday, Oswalt said the person of interest, Mark Valentino, 30, of Kokomo, is officially a suspect in Roberts’ murder. He said Valentino is a Roberts family acquaintance, and was visiting there when the homicide occurred.
Valentino remains in custody in Kokomo, and will appear in court there. Then, Oswalt said, Licking County officials will ask that he be returned to Licking County.