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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Columbus police remain at an impasse regarding a 2022 homicide that saw a man tried and set free from a not guilty verdict.
On March 26, 2022, 48-year-old Heidi Duda was inside a van suffering from a gunshot wound at 2:30 a.m. on Country Club Road, near Justin Road in the Shady Lane neighborhood. She was taken to Mount Carmel East hospital and listed in critical condition but died three days later.
Arrested was 53-year-old Rodney Vanatta, who according to police, was with Duda inside the van. Police reported that Vanatta and Duda had an altercation and that a gun was found inside the van. Vanatta was originally charged with felonious assault, but the charges were amended to two counts of murder after Duda died.
Court documents state that during interviews with police Vanatta, who called 9-1-1 at 2:31 a.m., told officers that while they were driving home Duda had been shot by an unknown male. Vanatta described the man as allegedly wearing a tan hoodie and driving a gray or maroon car.
In July of last year, Vanatta, was found not guilty on all charges and now Columbus police and Central Ohio Crime Stoppers continue to search for leads in Duda’s murder.
Crime Stoppers is offering a cash reward for any information leading to the arrest and/or indictment of the person(s) responsible for this crime. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 614-461-TIPS (8477) or visit www.stopcrime.org and submit your tip.