Trial date changed for one murder suspect

By John Hamilton -

WILMINGTON — The jury trial of a man charged with murder has been pushed back to September.

Kevin Noe Jr., 21, was scheduled to have his trial start on May 19 in Clinton County Common Pleas Court, according to court records.

Judge John “Tim” Rudduck made the decision to push it back to Sept. 1 due not only to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but also because the prosecution needs more time to review items.

“The state indicated it may need up to 60 days to provide cell phone carrier records, blood DNA lab reports, and statements made by co-defendants,” the court records state.

The court also allowed the appointed defense attorney —Matt Suellentrop — to request a court-appointed private investigator.

Noe is one of four suspects accused of the shooting death of 23-year-old Layne Hall of Blanchester on Jan. 21. The other three are Christian Terry, 22, Corey Ruffner, 21, and Joshua Williams, 18. All suspects are currently incarcerated at the Clinton County Jail.

Noe, Terry, and Ruffner were charged with alleged murder, involuntary manslaughter, and robbery. Williams was charged with alleged murder.

Court documents indicated Hall and three of the suspects (Terry, Noe, and Ruffner) allegedly rode in a car together to meet someone at the Brownberry Apartments parking lot; soon after the four arrived, the person they were to meet — allegedly Williams — pulled up in a car, and shortly after that is when gunfire was heard.

Although court documents indicate Terry, Noe or Ruffner did not purposely kill Hall, it alleges that if they had not taken part in initiating a robbery, the alleged murder would not have occurred. Williams is suspected of directly causing Hall’s death.

Jury trials are also scheduled for Williams beginning on July 28 and Ruffner beginning on Aug. 11. A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Terry on April 30.

By John Hamilton