COLUMBUS (WCMH/AP) – A jury was seated Monday afternoon and attorneys delivered their opening statements in the capital murder trial of Brian Golsby. Golsby is accused of the kidnapping, rape and murder of Ohio state university student Reagan Tokes. If convicted, Golsby could face the death penalty.
Prosecutor Ron O’Brien gave the jury an overview of the evidence against Golsby and described the victim as a college psychology major just a few months from graduation. “…Who never made that graduation because she was executed point blank in the head with a handgun,” O’Brien said.
O’Brien revealed that investigators recovered the handgun believed to be the murder weapon from a sewer in the Linden area but only after a lengthy interrogation of Brian Golsby and only after he changed his story several times.
“He took them to the gun,” O’Brien said. “They wouldn’t have found the gun had he not taken them there. He dumped the gun in one of the sewers and across the street he dumped two casings.”
O’Brien also told the jurors about GPS data from Brian Golsby’s ankle monitor and DNA evidence collected from the victim and her car. Golsby was wearing an ankle monitor as a condition of his release from prison and supervision by the Adult Parole Authority. Police say they matched Golsby’s DNA with evidence taken from Tokes’ car.
Defense attorney Kort Gatterdam suggested to jurors that there will be room for doubt about the DNA samples and the GPS data.
Gatterdam said he has no plans to put Golsby on the stand or to call any witnesses. “We have no burden or proof whatsoever,” Gatterdam said. “We don’t believe the state can overcome the presumption of innocence and prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Prosecutors say Tokes was kidnapped while walking to her car after she left work at a restaurant in the Short North. They say Golsby forced Tokes to withdraw money from an ATM, raped and murdered her.
Tokes’ body was found at Scioto Grove Metro Park in Grove City, about 10 miles southwest of Columbus.