Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

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Post by Praying For Faith on Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:23 am

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4 people missing in Knox County; foul play suspected
Kenyon College locks down campus


Friday, November 12, 2010 12:10 AM
Updated: Friday, November 12, 2010 12:34 AM
By Jim Woods
The Columbus Dispatch

Law-enforcement officials were searching a house last night in Knox County, and nearby Kenyon College had locked down its campus, because four people who have been reported missing are thought to be victims of foul play.

Deputies with the Knox County sheriff's office, along with agents for the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation, descended on the home at 481 King Beach Dr. last night.

The house is in the Apple Valley area of Howard Township. Kenyon College is about 7 miles away.

Knox County Sheriff David Barber told WBNS-TV (Channel 10) that Tina R. Herrmann, 32, and her friend Stephanie Spring, 41, along with Herrmann's children, Sarah Maynard, 13, and Kody Maynard, 10, were last seen Wednesday.

Gregory Borders, who lives at the home with Herrmann, reported the four missing Wednesday. Herrmann also didn't report for work, her co-workers said.

A search of the house found signs of violence, Barber told WBNS. He wouldn't elaborate.

Mark Ellis, news director for Kenyon College, confirmed that the school was placed in lockdown. Emergency notices were sent to students by cell phone and e-mail, after the school learned from authorities that "a dangerous individual" might be on campus, Ellis said. The alert, telling students to return to their rooms, was issued at 10:15p.m.

WBNS said that Herrmann's Ford pickup truck, which had been missing from her home, was found abandoned on the campus.

Ellis, who had gone to the campus late last night, said he'd been told that the school situation was related to the missing women and children.

He said that all buildings were secured, and that all students were ordered indoors.

Kenyon, a school of about 1,600 students in Gambier, was using its safety officers to escort any students who were out of their rooms back home.

Dispatch Assistant City Editor Brenda Jackson contributed to this story.

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Post by Wrapitup on Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:34 am

4 Missing From Knox Co.; Discovery Of Pickup Prompts Kenyon College Lockdown
Friday, November 12, 2010 12:16 AM
WBNS-10TV

APPLE VALLEY, Ohio — Authorities said a pickup belonging to a missing Knox County woman was found on the campus of Kenyon College late Thursday, prompting a lockdown.

Knox County Sheriff's deputies were searching for two women and two children, reported missing from an Apple Valley home on Thursday evening, 10TV News reported.

Tina Herrmann, 32, Stephanie Spring, 41, and two children, Cody Manerd, 10, and Sarah Manerd, 13, were reported missing.

The relationship between the four was not immediately clear.

Knox County Sheriff's deputies and investigators from the state's Bureau of Criminal Investigation spent several hours searching a house on Apple Valley Road, 10TV's Ashleigh Barry reported.

BCI investigators said there were signs of a struggle inside the home, Barry reported.

A dark purple Ford F-150 that belonged to one of the women was also missing, deputies said.

Kenyon College, in Gambier Ohio, was put on lockdown shortly after 10 p.m. after the pickup was found abandoned at the Brown Family Environmental Center.

An e-mail, sent to students at 11:10 p.m., said law enforcement told college officials there was a "potentially dangerous person in the vicinity."

Watch 10TV News HD and refresh 10TV.com for additional information.

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Post by raine1953 on Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:53 pm

Search Continues For Missing Women, Children

APPLE VALLEY, Ohio — Investigators continued to search a Knox County home for evidence on Friday after two woman and two children disappeared.
Their disappearance prompted authorities to lock down Kenyon College on Thursday night, after one of the missing person's vehicles was found parked near campus, 10TV News reported.

Deputies were at Tina Herrmann's home on King Beach Drive since 5 p.m. Thursday. Herrmann, 32, and her two children, vanished on Wednesday, along with Herrmann's friend, Stephanie Sprang, 10TV's Shayla Reaves reported.

SLIDESHOWS: Four Missing | Search For Missing Knox County Women, Children

According to Knox County Sheriff David Barber, the inside of the house was in "unusual condition." He said he was surprised that children and adults would be living inside.

The children, Sarah Maynard, 13, and Kody Maynard, 11, were not in school on Thursday, Reaves reported.

According to Barber, Tina Herrmann worked at Dairy Queen, located at 1600 Coschocton Ave., in Mount Vernon, and did not show up for her shift on Thursday.

Herrmann's pickup was later discovered near the Kenyon College campus in nearby Gambier.

The discovery of the vehicle prompted the Kenyon campus to be locked down at about 11 p.m. Friday. Students were asked to stay inside campus buildings. The lockdown was lifted Friday at 7 a.m.

In an e-mail sent to Kenyon students on Thursday night, college administrators said law enforcement told them that there was a "potentially dangerous person in the vicinity."

"It makes no sense to me," said Larry Maynard, the father of the missing children.

Larry Maynard said that he spoke with one of Tina Herrmann's co-workers, who went to her house and peeked inside her windows after not showing up for work.

"I guess (the co-worker saw) some beer cans and some things that looked kind of out of place, and she knew that something was definitely not right," Larry Maynard said. "My ex kept a pretty clean house. She went and entered the home and when she went into the home, she saw some blood in the home and -- at that point -- she turned around and left."

According to Larry Maynard, the co-worker then called 911. He told 10TV News that Tina Herrmann never missed work and his children never missed school.

Larry Maynard said that Tina Herrmann's boyfriend contacted him after she was reported missing.

"My kids are my world," Larry Maynard said. "It's like somebody had ripped my heart out of me. I don't want to believe that something has happened to my children, but in my heart, I know there's something that's happened to them."

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Knox County Sheriff's Office at 740-397-3333.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by raine1953 on Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:01 pm

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Last edited by Wrapitup on Sat Nov 13, 2010 5:05 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added photo's. Hope you don't mind, Raine!!)
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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by mommyof3kids on Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:16 pm

Oh No.. Beer cans laying around and BLOOD?? This doesn't sound good. I wonder if there was a home invasion?
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Normal Tina Herrmann goes missing along with her 2 children, Sarah & Kody Maynard, friend Stephanie Sprang, and dog

Post by TerryRose on Sat Nov 13, 2010 11:18 am

Blood was found in the home of a missing woman and her two children, whose disappearance along with her friend led to a lockdown at a college near where her pickup truck was spotted, a sheriff said Friday.

Investigators were interpreting the blood as a sign someone was injured but still considered the case a missing-persons report, Knox County Sheriff David Barber said.

Authorities were searching for 32-year-old Tina Herrmann, her 13-year-old daughter, Sarah Maynard, her 10-year-old son, Kody Maynard, and a 41-year-old friend, Stephanie Sprang. Sarah Maynard is a seventh-grader at East Knox Middle School, where her brother is in the fifth grade, school officials said. The children were at school Wednesday.

Herrmann and Sprang apparently had been looking at an apartment for Herrmann, said Greg Borders, who said he and Herrmann had recently ended a six-year relationship but still were living in the same house.

Herrmann's co-worker at Dairy Queen reported her missing on Wednesday after she didn't show up to work, Barber said. A sheriff's deputy went to her home in Howard, about 60 miles northeast of Columbus, twice Wednesday night and found lights on and a pickup truck in the driveway.

"No one answered the door," Barber said. "There was no sign of anything out of place."

Authorities returned to the home Thursday after the concerned co-worker went to the house and found blood inside. Investigators confirmed the blood but said they didn't see signs of a struggle, like overturned chairs.

It's unclear what led to the disappearance of the four, authorities said.

"Right now, there's no indication to say that they were abducted," the sheriff said. "But they're unaccounted."

Borders said Friday he last heard from Herrmann on Wednesday morning. He said Herrmann texted him on his way to work at a distribution center about 80 miles away in West Jefferson about 4:40 a.m. Wednesday to let him know that she'd fed the dog. He said the dog, a miniature pinscher named Tanner, also was missing.

The couple were living together in the split-level house, which sits along a rural road, despite splitting up several weeks ago, and they were on the verge of losing the house after falling a few months behind on their mortgage payments, Borders said.

"We were fairly civil, as civil as you can be living in the same house when you're split up," he told reporters outside the home.

He said they argued but their fights were never physical.

Herrmann's truck was found Thursday night on property owned by Kenyon College, about 7 miles from Howard. Officials there put the campus under an hours-long lockdown until Friday morning.

A statement posted on the school's website said "enhanced" security would be in place through at least the weekend.

Officials didn't believe there was any threat to students and the lockdown, instructing students to go to their residence halls and remain there, was done strictly as a precaution, school spokesman Shawn Presley said. Authorities did not say whether they found anyone, Presley said.

Borders said he finished his shift at 4 p.m. Wednesday and spent the night with a friend. He said he was playing golf on Thursday when his mother called and said Herrmann apparently was missing.

He said he didn't think much of it until he returned to the house in Howard after 5:30 p.m. and found authorities there.

He gave officers permission to search the house and didn't go inside himself. He said a deputy took a few steps into the home and said he saw a considerable mess inside.

"I think something bad happened, something happened inside the house," Borders said. "It's not like Tina or me to leave the house unsecured."

It wasn't clear if the house was unlocked when authorities arrived.

The children's father, Larry Maynard, told WBNS-TV it was unlike Herrmann to go away without letting him know. He didn't return messages seeking further comment.

The district where the children go to school had staff available if any students were upset about their missing classmates and wanted to talk, Superintendent Matt Caputo said Friday.
———
Associated Press writers Doug Whiteman and Jeannie Nuss in Columbus and Lisa Cornwell in Cincinnati contributed to this report. Researcher Monika Mathur contributed from New York.

(This version CORRECTS Herrmann and Sprang were looking for an apartment for Herrmann, not as a couple.)

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Post by Nama on Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:22 pm

From left, Sarah Maynard, Kody Maynard, their mother Tina Hermann, and family friend Stephanie Sprang.


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Post by Nama on Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:29 pm

A sheriff in Ohio says an unusual amount of blood found in a missing woman's home is believed to be a factor in her disappearance with her two children and a female friend.
Investigators are searching by air and land and in a lake about a half-mile from the home. Friends and neighbors began their own search at about 7 a.m. at nearby Kenyon College.

Barber says nothing has come up as investigators track the women's cell phone and credit card use, but that he's asking people to keep a "guarded but optimistic attitude."

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Post by Nama on Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:31 pm

According to Larry Maynard, Herrmann and Borders were having problems and she needed to get away from him. Larry Maynard told 10TV News that Herrmann was searching for a new place to live and that his children often spoke of problems in the house.

"The kids have told me when (Borders) gets drunk, he becomes somewhat violent," Larry Maynard said. "He throws beer bottles at the pickup truck if their mom tries to leave. He broke the garage door. He gets real vulgar, belligerent when he's drunk."

Borders admitted that the situation was not ideal but the reports of a volatile relationship were not true.

"We were fairly civil," Borders said. "I mean, as civil as you can be living in the same house when you are split up."

"I'm expecting the worst and hoping for the best," Larry Maynard said.

Sarah M. Maynard is 5 feet tall, weighing 90 pounds, with blonde hair and green eyes.

Kody A. Maynard was described as 4 feet, 10 inches tall, weighing 70 pounds, with brown hair and hazel eyes.

Sprang is 5 feet, 3 inches tall, weighing 110 pounds, with blonde hair and green eyes.

Herrmann was described as 5 feet, 6 inches tall, weighing 122 pounds, with sandy blonde hair and blue eyes.

Investigators said they are treating this as a missing person's case, and they have no suspects and no persons of interest.

""I'm hoping that they find them and they are safe and Kody and (Sarah) are back in school," said Morgan McCarthy, a friend who created a Facebook page to coordinate information about the missing people.

As of late Friday, more than 600 people joined the group, 10TV's Jason Frazer reported.

The page has been filled with messages of prayers and pictures of the missing people.[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Post by raine1953 on Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:50 pm

TerryRose - There's already a thread on this started by Praying For Faith in the Lounge, titled '4 People Missing in Knox County; Foul Play Suspected' - I didn't know where to put this so you could merge, sorry!
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Post by Nama on Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:09 pm

Raine, :thanks: for noticing that there were two threads on the same case. I merged the threads.
It helps when the title of the thread has the name of the person that the thread is about so it's easier to search to see if someone has already posted a thread about a specific case.
I know there are some duplicate pictures, and maybe duplicate posts......I'm just going to leave them all.

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Post by Nama on Sat Nov 13, 2010 2:04 pm

Knox County Sheriff David Barber reported today his office has been receiving tips on the case of the four missing persons from Apple Valley.

“We appreciate the efforts of the news media to get out the information about these four people being missing and publishing their pictures,” he said. “We have received some information. Any information we are receiving is being followed up by the detectives at this time. Evidence is continuing to be collected at the site. [Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation] is not here yet this morning but they will be back later on today.”

Barber said the BCI is processing the evidence they have collected to this point and the vehicles belonging to the two women. BCI will also be analyzing the blood samples collected at the site to determine if it belongs to more than one person and to see if identification can be made from DNA analysis. Barber did not have any kind of timeline on when there would be results from any of the evidence processing.

“I don’t want to speak for the BCI&I,” he said. “But they have made it a high priority case. We are hoping that the processing of all the evidence from the residence, and from the two trucks, will provide us with more information as to their disappearance.”

Barber pointed out that aircraft from the Ohio State Highway Patrol was on the case as he spoke at the scene.

“They are flying over this area with infrared scanners,” he explained. “We also have officers on quad-runners checking the areas around here.”

Barber said the continued use of airplanes and quad-runners would be “to look for any one or anything that may have gone away from the scene that might be relevant to the investigation.”

“We are utilizing the FBI, for instance to analyze data such as credit card hits or computer-related information. The FBI has resources to check those kinds of things that we just don’t have,” he explained. “But our detectives are doing the day to day investigation. I have never been afraid to ask for help and I will partner with whoever can help us solve a case.”

Barber said some volunteer groups were searching the area around the Brown Family Environmental Center outside of Gambier where Herrmann’s truck was found Thursday night.

“That area had been thoroughly searched by law enforcement officers Thursday night,” Barber said. “We hope those folks, if they find anything unusual, back off from it and call the sheriff’s office immediately. We would also like to hear from anybody who had any kind of contact with any of the four of them on Wednesday afternoon. First we are trying to determine a time line for Wednesday, and second, we want to find out if anybody heard anything unusual from the four of them — if they had any concerns about anything they heard from them or anything about another person or family issues. If anyone has seen them or heard from them call (740) 397-3333, our dispatcher division or (740) 393-6800, our detective division.”

“If they find anything unusual, such as clothing items or maybe something that looked like a sign of a struggle, with flattened down foliage — and God forbid — a body, we would not want them to touch anything. We ask they back away from the scene and immediately contact law enforcement,” said Barber.

Barber said he commends the efforts being made by the community to support the investigation but asks for caution be taken in this serious matter.

“They maybe so focused on trying to help that they are not being safe about it and fall through a hole, especially when they are going through terrain like this,” he said. “We do have a little bit of concern for them but we do appreciate the efforts.”

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Post by Wrapitup on Sat Nov 13, 2010 11:30 pm

raine1953 wrote:TerryRose - There's already a thread on this started by Praying For Faith in the Lounge, titled '4 People Missing in Knox County; Foul Play Suspected' - I didn't know where to put this so you could merge, sorry!
I have a post about using the search button first before starting a new thread. Here is the link to the post:

7. Please utilize the SEARCH engine, located at the right hand corner of the home page to make sure a new topic that you want to post has not already been covered. There are times when two subjects are basically the same and the admin's merge the threads. Honestly, this is not a huge issue as I am happy you are posting, but the SEARCH engine is very handy to get you to the correct thread.
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It happens to all of us, so I don't get upset about it. I would rather have us post and have the admin's merge than not post at all but the "search" button is a real good tool. Thank you, Raine, for noticing.

Also, here is a link that asks that we please put the person's name in the subject line for an easier search.

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Back on topic, this case seems to be getting worse and worse. omg

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Post by janie on Sun Nov 14, 2010 2:57 pm

Sarah Maynard found alive other three persons are still missing. Thirty year old Matthew J Hoffman is in police custody and is charged with kidnapping.


A 13-year-old Ohio girl who had gone missing with her brother, mother and a family friend was found safe early Sunday, authorities said. The other three people have not been located.

Sarah Maynard has been found safe in the basement of a home in Mount Vernon, Ohio and is being evaluated at a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Matthew Hoffman, 30, is under arrest for kidnapping, with additional charges expected. The whereabouts of the teen's mother, Tina Herrmann, brother Kody Maynard and family friend Stephanie Sprang are still unknown.

Read more on CNN.com

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Post by janie on Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:14 pm

Here's a little more information about Matthew Hoffman.
This is from fox news.com

DEVELOPING: A sheriff in central Ohio says a 13-year-old girl who was missing with her mother, brother and a friend has been found bound and gagged in the basement of a man's home about 10 miles from her house.

Knox County Sheriff David Barber said Sunday that Sarah Maynard's mother, Tina Herrmann, is still missing, along with her 10-year-old brother, Kody, and her mother's 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang.

Barber says 30-year-old Matthew Hoffman was arrested on one count of kidnapping at his home in Mount Vernon, about 40 miles north of Columbus. He says reports that a body bag had been taken from the home are false.

He did not know if Hoffman was connected to either Herrmann or Sprang but says he is not the ex-boyfriend of either woman.

Barber says the girl is hospitalized in good condition.

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Post by TerryRose on Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:18 pm

Sorry for the duplication, I did look for it and didn't spot the thread already started. Mea Culpa.
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Normal 13 yr old Sarah Maynard found, 30-year-old Matthew Hoffman arrested. Sarah Maynard's mother, Tina Herrmann, is still missing, along with her 10-year-old brother, Kody, and her mother's 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang.

Post by Wrapitup on Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:25 pm

Published November 14, 2010
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This undated family photo provided by WBNS-10TV on Friday, Nov. 12, 2010, shows 13-year-old Sarah Maynard. …

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – A 13-year-old girl who went missing with her mother, brother and a friend was found bound and gagged Sunday in the basement of a man's home about 10 miles from her house, authorities said. Sarah Maynard's mother, Tina Herrmann, is still missing, along with her 10-year-old brother, Kody, and her mother's 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang.

Barber said 30-year-old Matthew Hoffman was arrested on one count of kidnapping at his home in Mount Vernon, about 40 miles north of Columbus, and that more charges are expected. He said reports from neighbors that a body bag had been taken from the home are false.

"We have no one that we're aware of who is deceased," Barber said. "So we're still treating this as a missing person's case."

He did not know if Hoffman was connected to either Herrmann or Sprang, but said he is not the ex-boyfriend of either woman.

Barber said authorities hoped Hoffman would give them information leading to the other three.

"We were hopeful of finding more than one of the missing people in the house," he said. "But the information we had was that Sarah would definitely be found in that house."

Barber said the girl was hospitalized in good condition. He did not say what led them to the home.

Authorities believe the girl had been "under the control" of Hoffman since Wednesday, when she and her brother last attended school, Barber said. Their mother was reported missing that day when she did not show up for work at a local Dairy Queen.

Barber has said blood indicating an injury had been found in Herrmann's home, where the friend's vehicle was in the driveway.

Herrmann's pickup truck had been found Thursday night near the Kenyon College campus, leading to a lockdown at the school.

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Post by Wrapitup on Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:28 pm

TerryRose wrote:Sorry for the duplication, I did look for it and didn't spot the thread already started. Mea Culpa.
Couple Hugging chug its all good

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Post by Wrapitup on Sun Nov 14, 2010 3:29 pm

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Normal He was a weirdo

Post by Nama on Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:16 pm

Officials said Hoffman has two listed addresses, and the second might link him to the missing.

"The residence on Apple Valley Drive is in walking distance of the crime scene, and it is owned by his mother and stepfather," said Barber.

Barber said it's unclear if Hoffman knew the victims, but said it's clear he somehow made his way into their lives.

"He was a weirdo, I mean he really was a weirdo," said Donna Davis, Hoffman's neighbor. "He sat in the trees, if you look back here in the tree, there's a hammock where he would just sit and watch people. He's just different."

Barber said more charges are expected to be filed against Hoffman.

Meanwhile, investigators are working to complete DNA tests on the blood found in Hermann's home. They're also searching Hoffman's home, and plan to process Hermann's car, which was found Friday on the campus of Kenyon College, about 5 miles from where Maynard was found.

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Normal Matthew Hoffman

Post by Nama on Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:22 pm



They have not released any details about what led them to Hoffman’s home, either. His house is about 10 miles from Sarah’s home.

Neighbors described Hoffman as a nature lover who trimmed trees, had a hammock in a tree and collected leaves. However, others near him say he lived alone and was strange. One local mother told the media that she did not allow her kids out to play when she spotted Hoffman outside alone. Another said he had a hammock in a tree and would often listen in on neighbor’s conversations.

Authorities are mum on a number of questions. For example, it is currently unknown if Hoffman knew the family or if he had become friends with anyone in the family. However, they did say that they believed Maynard was “under the control” of Hoffman since last Wednesday when Sarah and her family were last seen together.

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Normal Once again, soft sentencing for an outrageous crime has led to more heartache.

Post by Nama on Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:25 pm

Hoffman is a convicted felon who was sentenced to prison for 8 years in January, 2001, after pouring 10 gallons of gasoline into a townhouse and setting it on fire to cover up a burglary. The townhouse was part of an 8 unit occupied building, which required the evacuation of 16 people and completely destroyed 2 units. He was also sentenced to 4 years each for burglary and aggravated motor vehicle theft, to run concurrently with the arson sentence.

"I just want to say that I did have concern for the people in the condos," Hoffman advised during sentencing. So concerned was he, that he set the fire while they slept and left without warning anyone. But for the Grace of GOD, no one was killed.

Hoffman was eligible for up to 72 years in prison, but the judge was sympathetic to Hoffman's young age, being 20 years old at the time.

"All these sentences will run at the same time, so essentially you will serve eight years in prison," Judge Joel Thompson said. "I don't want to make it too long. I want you to have hope and to take advantage of the programs offered in prison."

Once again, soft sentencing for an outrageous crime has led to more heartache.

Hoffman is said to not be cooperating.

Whoever submitted the tip leading to Hoffman saved Sarah's life. If anyone else has any information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, please report it. Your clue may be the last piece in the puzzle.

Knox County Sheriffs Office: (740)397-3333
Detective Division of KCSO: (740)393-6800

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Normal Sarah Maynard

Post by Nama on Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:25 pm


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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Nama on Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:29 pm

Why haven't we heard what Sarah told the LE as to why she was found bound and gagged in Hoffman's basement?

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Wrapitup on Mon Nov 15, 2010 12:35 am

Maybe they are keeping it close to the vest? She is also a minor so that might have something to do with it.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by NiteSpinR on Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:23 am

I have a bad feeling. How did this guy control 2 women, a teenage girl and a pretty good sized boy?
How did he manage all 4? And for how long before he singled out Sarah in his basement?


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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Wrapitup on Mon Nov 15, 2010 8:10 am

By DOUG WHITEMAN, Associated Press Doug Whiteman, Associated Press – 1 hr 34 mins ago

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – Ten miles from home, a 13-year-old girl was found bound and gagged but alive four days after disappearing with her family. The whereabouts of her mother, brother and another woman remained a mystery, however.

A man was arrested Sunday at the home where Sarah Maynard was found in this central Ohio city, and authorities hope he will provide information leading to the others, Knox County Sheriff David Barber said.

"We were hopeful that we would find more than one" of the missing people in Hoffman's house, Barber said. "Our information was definite that it was most likely that Sarah was going to be in that house."

Barber did not say what led investigators to the two-story tan-sided house where they found the girl bound in the basement. Matthew J. Hoffman, 30, was arrested and charged with kidnapping.

Barber said more charges are expected against Hoffman, who lives at the home about 40 miles north of Columbus.

Hoffman was being held in the county jail, where personnel would not comment on whether he had an attorney. A bond hearing was expected to be held Monday.

Barber said the girl was hospitalized in good condition, but he would give no details and did not say if she had been sexually abused.

Sarah, her mother, 32-year-old Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old brother, Kody, and Herrmann's 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang disappeared Wednesday from Herrmann's home in nearby Howard. Barber said DNA testing on blood found in that house was expected to begin Monday.

Authorities believe the girl had been "under the control" of Hoffman since Wednesday, when she and her brother last attended school, the sheriff said. He did not know if Hoffman was connected to either Herrmann or Sprang, but said he is not the ex-boyfriend of either woman.

"At this time, whether he's connected to the family or whether he connected himself to the family ... a lot of that remains to be seen as the investigation continues," Barber said.

Authorities had talked to the girl but would not release any details because the investigation is ongoing, Barber said.

Authorities blocked off about a half block on either side of the home as they investigated early Sunday afternoon, keeping people from entering or leaving about a half dozen homes. But by late Sunday afternoon, the only sign of investigative activity was red and white evidence tape sealing the front door of the home.

The house with green shutters and front door and a large television antenna on the roof sits in a lower-middle-income neighborhood with two bars within a block. Holly grows through the weathered slats of the porch. A sheet covered one window, and blinds were pulled down on the rest.

Dawna Davis, 35, who lives next door to Hoffman, said she told her children to stay indoors when he was out. She said he moved in alone about a year ago and that a girlfriend lived with him temporarily with her son until about a month ago.

"He would sit and listen to us up in a tree. He had a hammock and he would sit there and listen to us," she said. "He was just different. He was very different."

Davis said Hoffman did tree trimming work and had built a fire Wednesday night in his backyard, where there was a mound of ashes Sunday with tree parts on it. She said he walked to a nearby park with a lake almost every day and was a "nature person" who collected leaves.

Attempts to reach relatives of Hoffman and of Sarah were unsuccessful Sunday.

Herrmann was reported missing Wednesday when she did not show up for work at a local Dairy Queen. Barber has said blood indicating an injury had been found in her home, where Sprang's vehicle was in the driveway.

Herrmann's pickup truck had been found Thursday night near the Kenyon College campus, leading to a lockdown at the school.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Praying For Faith on Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:02 pm

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Authorities scour trash bags, bike trail in search for 3 missing

Sheriff says it's possible mother, son and family friend are dead

Tuesday, November 16, 2010 02:53 AM
Updated: Tuesday, November 16, 2010 12:17 PM
By Allison Manning and Elizabeth Gibson
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH

Citizen searchers watch divers this morning around a pond in Foundation Park.

Citizen searchers watch divers this morning around a pond in Foundation Park.
Hundreds turned out for a candlelight vigil in Mount Vernon last night to pray for the missing trio.
Jay LaPRETE | Associated Press

Hundreds turned out for a candlelight vigil in Mount Vernon last night to pray for the missing trio.
Tina Herrmann
Kody Maynard
Stephanie Sprang

Authorities in the air and on the ground scoured Foundation Park and its 86 acres of lakes yesterday for evidence. They pulled several abandoned cars from the waters, but none was connected to the case.

Tom Dodge | DISPATCH
Authorities in the air and on the ground scoured Foundation Park and its 86 acres of lakes yesterday for evidence. They pulled several abandoned cars from the waters, but none was connected to the case.

UPDATE:

Authorities searching for three missing people in Knox County found duct-taped trash bags on the side of a road in Knox County. Searchers are scouring a recreational trail, roadsides and other areas today in hope of finding three people missing since Wednesday.

It was unclear if the bags yielded any clues to the whereabouts of Tina Herrmann, 32; her 11-year-old son, Kody Maynard; and a family friend, Stephanie Sprang, 42. Herrmann's 13-year-old daughter, Sarah Maynard, was found alive but bound and gagged in the basement of an area man Sunday. That man, Matthew J. Hoffman, is charged with kidnapping and will appear in court today.

The bags are on the side of Lower Gambier Road near Rt. 229, about a half mile from where Tina Herrmann's car was found abandoned on Thursday. The silver-and-black tarp is about 20 feet off the road near the edge of a woods. Agents with the Ohio Bureau of Identification and Investigation are on the way to check out the bags, a Franklin County deputy said.

Delaware County deputies and two dog teams also joined the search. They are searching the Kokosing Gap Trail, a 14-mile paved recreational trail that runs between Mount Vernon and Danville. A section of the trail ends near where Tina Herrmann's truck was found abandoned on Thursday. (See a PDF of the trail).

The dogs are from two volunteer groups - Midwest K9 Search Unit and Rapid Assistance to Community Emergencies.

Check back on Dispatch.com throughout the day for more details.

PREVIOUS STORY:

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio - The pack of news vans and the hum of helicopters overhead were grim reminders that three people were still missing in Knox County yesterday.

Despite the relief that 13-year-old Sarah Maynard was found alive in the basement of a home on Sunday, talk grew bleaker about the fate of the others who went missing when she did on Wednesday: Sarah's mother, Tina Herrmann, 32; her 11-year-old brother, Kody; and a family friend, Stephanie Sprang, 42.

"You need to be optimistic because there's no evidence. We haven't recovered a body," Knox County Sheriff David B. Barber said. "But we need to be realistic. There's a possibility that these folks are dead."

Matthew J. Hoffman, the owner of the Columbus Road house where Sarah was found bound and gagged, is charged with kidnapping and is being held at the Knox County jail. Hoffman, 30, is scheduled to appear in Knox County Municipal Court today.

Barber said yesterday that Sarah is doing well and was with family members. He said investigators interviewed her after she was treated at the hospital, but he wouldn't elaborate.

Hoffman's mother and stepfather live in the Apple Valley neighborhood, near the home where Herrmann and her two children lived. Sprang lives just around the corner.

Yesterday afternoon, her father told WBNS-TV (Channel 10) that her family still holds out hope.

"If Stephanie can hear us out there, I want her to know, and hopefully she can feel our thoughts, that we will get her back," said Stephen Thompson. "Your mom, me, your whole family- we're all looking for you."

Thompson said that the ordeal since last week has been "beyond comprehension for all of us. We just can't understand."

Several family members expressed frustration at the lack of information available from the sheriff's office, but they declined to speak on the record. Barber said he hadn't heard of any such complaints.

A man who identified himself as Hoffman's stepfather said yesterday that the family is "distraught" and that deputies had told them not to comment publicly on the case. He said his stepson is a bit of a "loner" and hasn't lived with him and his wife at their Apple Valley home for two years.

But Barber said authorities are looking into whether Hoffman somehow became acquainted with Herrmann or her children. He said he didn't consider the entry into the house at 481 King Beach Rd., where blood was found last week after the four were reported missing, a forced entry.

"It's an investigation into the recovery of three people that we can clearly say did not leave that King Beach Road residence of their own volition," Barber said.

The sheriff said authorities don't have any evidence that more than one person was involved in the kidnapping, leading many to think the worst about the three who are still missing.

Thursday, when Herrmann's pickup truck was found abandoned at Kenyon College, about 7 miles from her home, Hoffman was sitting in his own car nearby. A Knox County deputy spoke to Hoffman at the time, Barber said.

Yesterday, investigators scoured the 125-acre Foundation Park in Mount Vernon, a former gravel pit that was turned into a recreation area by the city. State Highway Patrol helicopters fitted with infrared cameras searched from above, while investigators patrolled the 86 acres of lakes.

As the hours ticked away, residents were grasping for any sign of hope that Herrmann, Sprang and Kody were still alive. Several cars were pulled from the water-filled quarries at the park, but they were unconnected to the disappearance.

Several hundred people - family members, friends and strangers - watched the search at the park until their faces could be seen only by the flashing lights atop nearby service vehicles.

"We've been here all day for three days," said Robert Lonsinger, 34, whose wife used to work with Herrmann. "I'd expect somebody to do it for us if it was my family, so we're helping search."

For many residents, it was chilling to be the center of a story that's playing out in the national news.

Many Mount Vernon residents moved to the town, 40 miles north of Columbus, to escape the city. Crimes in their town are more typically small-time burglaries and drunken-driving arrests.

"In small-town America, we like to think we're still safe," said Sandy McQuigg as she waited to pick up her 9-year-old grandson at Columbia Elementary School, just down the road from where Sarah was found.

The quiet of the local public library was disrupted as employees gathered around a TV.

Outside, Ted Dingler, 72, said reminders of the missing are everywhere he turns. At church on Sunday, his pastor skipped the usual sermon to offer the congregation a chance to meditate and pray.

"You could have heard a pin drop. It was a beautiful moment," he said. "He talked about how horrible things do happen, but we are not alone."

In front of the Dairy Queen where Herrmann works, the sign said "pray for our missing family" instead of listing the daily specials.

"We're all glued to the television in hopes of finding out the why," said Krista Smith, 40, whose daughter goes to school with Sarah.

"You want to know how this happened."

Parents said they know this is not something that happens every day, but it's made them more cautious. Smith said she walked her daughter to a Girl Scouts meeting yesterday instead of letting her go on her own as usual.

Last night, residents filled South Vernon United Methodist Church for a candlelight vigil. Sprang's oldest son, Michael, and a niece thanked the crowd for their support and prayers, and told them to go home and be thankful for their families.

The family teared up as hundreds of voices sang Amazing Grace, perhaps putting a little extra hope into the words: "I once was lost, but now am found."

WBNS-TV (Channel 10) contributed to this report.
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Normal $1 Million Bond For Suspected Knox Co. Kidnapper

Post by Nama on Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:12 pm

A judge set bond on Tuesday at $1 million for a man suspected of kidnapping a Knox County teenager.
A judge ordered that Matthew Hoffman, 30, post the full bond in order to be released from custody, 10TV's Maureen Kocot reported.

In most cases, people held on charges are required to pay 10 percent of the bond total.

Hoffman was scheduled to be back in court on Nov. 23 at 2:30 p.m.

Hoffman is accused of kidnapping and holding Sarah Maynard, 13, for several days in his home. The girl was rescued on Sunday when authorities swarmed Hoffman's house on Columbus Road.

Maynard was found bound and gagged in Hoffman's basement, authorities said.

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Normal Missing Ohio family likely dead

Post by Nama on Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:19 pm

Investigators looking for three missing people in Ohio says it's likely they are all dead.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:30 pm

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Wrapitup on Tue Nov 16, 2010 5:31 pm


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Normal He did not speak and yawned at one point Tuesday during a court hearing where he appeared by a video link from the county jail. A judge set his bond at $1 million.

Post by Nama on Tue Nov 16, 2010 10:30 pm

Neighbors and acquaintances of Matthew Hoffman never knew what to make of him. He was controlling, peculiar and smart in a scary way, they said.

The 30-year-old, who spent six years in a Colorado prison before returning to Ohio, is charged with kidnapping a 13-year-old girl who was found bound and gagged in his basement. The girl's mother, brother and a family friend remain missing and are feared dead.

Hoffman has been in jail since Sunday, when authorities rescued Sarah Maynard from the basement of a home he bought a year ago. They believe she had been held there since last Wednesday.

He did not speak and yawned at one point Tuesday during a court hearing where he appeared by a video link from the county jail. A judge set his bond at $1 million.

His public defender, Bruce Malek, said Hoffman worked sometimes as a tree trimmer but was currently unemployed. The county sheriff said Hoffman was under suicide watch.

Search teams in the air and on the ground continued looking through vacant buildings, wooded areas and along roads for Maynard's mother, 32-year-old Tina Herrmann; Herrmann's 10-year-old son, Kody Maynard; and her 41-year-old friend, Stephanie Sprang.

They haven't been seen since last Wednesday. Knox County Sheriff David Barber said Tuesday that while there's a chance they are still alive, the evidence and the amount of time that has passed means "the likelihood is of course that they are not alive."

A deputy searching Herrmann's home last week found an "unusual" amount of blood inside. Barber said Tuesday that items found in the home, including a tarp and trash bags, are significant to the investigation.

Barber said he has been told by Sarah Maynard's father that the girl is doing well, under the circumstances.

"I'm looking forward to meeting this young lady in person, because she has more friends, I think, and more fans than she is ever is going to realize," Barber said. "There are so many people behind her that definitely that's going to help with her emotional recovery."

Authorities in Ohio have said very little about Hoffman's background, but he has had several legal scrapes.

His former girlfriend claimed he choked her, pushed her against a wall and used his forearm to pin her neck during an argument at his house on Oct. 24, according to a police report obtained by The Associated Press. The woman told investigators she thought he was going to kill her, but did not want to press charges.

A man at a house where the woman lives said Tuesday that no one from her family wanted to comment.

In 2000, when Hoffman was living in the Colorado ski resort town of Steamboat Springs, he was accused of stealing a Chevrolet Suburban and other items from a home and returning the next day with 10 gallons of gasoline to set it on fire to cover it up, the Steamboat Pilot & Today reported. Two townhouses were destroyed and eight were damaged.

He was sentenced to eight years in prison.

"There was no rational reason for just the sheer violence that he subjected those people to," said Charles Feldmann, a prosecutor who had argued for a stiffer sentence.

Hoffman returned to Ohio after he was released from prison in 2007. He often behaved strangely, his Ohio neighbors said.

He would sit in a tree or atop his roof and watch them, they said. He collected leaves at a park across the street from his home and would stuff them into trash bags, hanging the bags on the inside walls for insulation.

Jessica Shirley, 35, got to know Hoffman and his former girlfriend over the last year when they would visit her friend, who lived next to the couple. She said he was smart and controlling.

"He was kind of like the intellectual," she said. "Kind of crazy."

He wouldn't let his former girlfriend smoke or allow her son to eat junk food, Shirley said. He also made a woman who lived with him until recently join a gym, she said. The two worked out together, she said.

"That was the only normal activity I know that he did," Shirley said.

Dawna Davis, 35, who lives next door to Hoffman, said Hoffman would sit in a tree and listen to them talk. "He was just different. He was very different," she said.

Still, she'd give him food once in a while.

Hoffman grew up in northeast Ohio and spent his first two years of high school near Warren before moving to the central part of the state, where he attended a career center.

Following graduation in 1999, he moved to Colorado and worked as a plumber in Steamboat Springs.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by lisette on Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:16 pm

"It makes no sense to me," said Larry Maynard, the father of the missing children.

Larry Maynard said that he spoke with one of Tina Herrmann's co-workers, who went to her house and peeked inside her windows after not showing up for work.

"I guess (the co-worker saw) some beer cans and some things that looked kind of out of place, and she knew that something was definitely not right," Larry Maynard said. "My ex kept a pretty clean house. She went and entered the home and when she went into the home, she saw some blood in the home and -- at that point -- she turned around and left."

According to Larry Maynard, the co-worker then called 911. He told 10TV News that Tina Herrmann never missed work and his children never missed school.

Larry Maynard said that Tina Herrmann's boyfriend contacted him after she was reported missing.

"My kids are my world," Larry Maynard said. "It's like somebody had ripped my heart out of me. I don't want to believe that something has happened to my children, but in my heart, I know there's something that's happened to them."
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Art, it sounds like the father is in the area and involved in the children's lives, a fact that is good for Sarah's sake...I think I read or heard that she was with him now.
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Normal brief 10-minute news conference at 3 p.m. today

Post by Nama on Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:21 pm

Two women and an 11-year-old boy, who apparently vanished a week ago today, remain missing and have not been found -- dead or alive.

In a brief 10-minute news conference at 3 p.m. today, Knox County Sheriff David Barber disclosed little new information, saying the investigation continues with no major developments.

Today, he sounded more pessimistic than ever about the odds of finding the missing people alive. "Unfortunately, the reality that these folks may not be alive is becoming more and more prevalent," Barber said.

Authorities are still looking for Tina Herrman, 32, her 11-year-old son, Kody Maynard, and family friend Stephanie Sprang, 41. There has been no activity on their cell-phone, banking or credit-card accounts, the sheriff said.

The trio, along with Herrmann's daughter, 13-year-old Sarah Maynard, were last seen last Wednesday. Sarah was found alive Sunday, bound and gagged in an area man's basement.

That man, Matthew J. Hoffman, 30, was charged with kidnapping. He was in court yesterday and remains in jail on a $1 million bond.

Barber announced today that Herrmann was last seen wearing a white baseball cap, a tan hooded sweatshirt, dark sweat pants and tennis shoes. Her son, Kody, was last seen wearing a blue, zippered hooded sweatshirt, a gray t-shirt, jeans and black shoes. A clothing description was not available on Sprang.

Volunteer searches continued to examine areas throughout Knox County today in hopes of finding the missing people. Barber said the public has provided lots of tips, "yielding some information that is helpful."

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by artgal16 on Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:28 pm

The 13 year old should be able to give a clearer picture of how one man subdued the two woman and the boy.
Did he have a gun?
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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by Nama on Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:33 pm

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Normal Report against Hoffman filed by former girlfriend

Post by Nama on Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:35 pm

A former girlfriend of Matthew Hoffman, who is charged in connection with the kidnapping of Sarah Maynard, 13, from her Apple Valley home a week ago, filed a report with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office alleging he choked her last month. The report shows she told a county dispatcher who took the call, that she thought he was going to kill her.

In the report, the Mount Vernon woman whose identity the News is withholding, said she went to Hoffman’s house to retrieve her vehicle. During a discussion, she alleged Hoffman choked her and pinned her to the floor.

Hoffman, who according to the report is 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds, allegedly then released the woman, who then left the residence and called the sheriff’s office.

“We were in his living room talking and he got upset and pushed me against the wall,” the complainant’s statement from Oct. 24 reads.

“He had his forearm up against my neck and was choking me,” she continued, adding she then briefly got loose before Hoffman grabbed her again, and the two tumbled over a chair onto the floor.

“I was fighting to try and get him off me but he proceeded to choke me on the ground,” she wrote.

She estimated Hoffman pinned her to the ground while choking her for one or two minutes.

She said he then let her up, and the two talked for a few minutes before she left.

The woman declined to press charges against Hoffman, according to the report.

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Normal Suspected Kidnapper Bought Trash Bags, T-Shirt, Tarps

Post by Nama on Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:39 pm

According to Barber, Hoffman purchased trash bags, a T-shirt, tarps and a sandwich from the Mount Vernon Walmart. Investigators recovered trash bags and a tarp during their investigation, Barber said.

Barber would not elaborate on when the items were purchased.

Investigators tracked Hoffman down from the receipt and swarmed his Columbus Road home on Sunday morning. Sarah Maynard was found alive, bound and gagged in Hoffman's basement.

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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by lisette on Thu Nov 18, 2010 11:20 am

Maybe if the girlfriend had pressed charges, he wouldn't have been out to hurt this family...Maybe!
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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by TerryRose on Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:02 pm

CNN has just reported that police have found 3 bodies. Report on this is being developed presently and is to come. There will be a news conference today.
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Normal The 3 bodies have been found

Post by TerryRose on Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:22 pm

News conference at 4:00 PM EST.
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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

Post by raine1953 on Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:54 pm

On WS there is a live feed and it appears that it's a or the crime scene, recover or search team concentrating UP in trees in the middle of the woods. OMG, this is getting worse.
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Normal Re: Hoffman pleads guilty to all charges in lieu of the DP in murders of Tina Herrmann, her 10-year-old son, Kody (daughter Sarah found alive), & her 41-year-old friend Stephanie Sprang/ Hoffman covered his house in leaves

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