An arrest has been made in connection with the death of Reagan Tokes, the fourth-year in psychology who was declared missing on Thursday, the Grove City Division of Police announced Saturday morning.
Brian Lee Golsby, 29, has been charged with aggravated murder, aggravated kidnapping and aggravated robbery. Police said in a Saturday morning press conference there could be a connection between Golsby, who has a criminal record, and recent attacks around the German Village area.
Golsby was released from prison in Nov. 2016 after serving nearly a six-year sentence for one count of kidnapping and one count of rape, police said. He was convicted of the two second-degree felonies on May 27, 2011. Both crimes were committed in Franklin County, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction’s website. Golsby is a registered sex offender.
Tokes was declared missing on Thursday morning by her sister, Mackenzie, after Reagan Tokes did not arrive home Wednesday night following her shift at Bodega Cafe, in the Short North.
The Franklin County Coroner’s Office declared Tokes dead on Friday morning. She is believed to have suffered two gunshot wounds to the head.
Tokes’ body was discovered Thursday afternoon at Scioto Grove Metro Park in Grove City but, at the time, the identity of the body was not clear. A link between Tokes’ disappearance and the recovered body was made after Grove City police put out an alert Thursday night for a missing car that matched the description and license plate of the 1999 Honda Acura belonging to Tokes.
Police found Tokes’ car Friday afternoon in the 700-block of Oakwood Avenue, just east of German Village.
The investigation is still ongoing and leads are continuing to be followed, police said during the press conference. The police said Tokes was “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
After police recovered Tokes’ vehicle, which was found nearby Golsby’s residence, several items were tested for DNA, which matched that of Golsby. A search warrant was put out for Golsby’s address, 1049 Forrest Street, Columbus, and he was arrested around 4 a.m.
Police believe Golsby crossed paths with Tokes shortly after she left work around 9:45 p.m. on Wednesday night. Police said the “strongest evidence” they have is that Golsby shot Tokes at Scioto Grove Metro Park, where her body was discovered, but they are continuing to follow leads.
The Franklin County Coroner did not find any other evidence of trauma on Tokes’ body, police said, but they are still waiting for the official coroner’s report, which includes the results of a rape kit.
“Nobody should have to go through this,” Grove City Mayor Richard Stage said during the press conference. “We all mourn with the family and the friends.”
University President Michael Drake also released a statement.
“We are grateful to the Grove City Division of Police, Columbus Division of Police and the state Bureau of Criminal Investigation for their swift, collective efforts,” Drake said. “We are relieved that this investigation has identified a suspect, and we will continue to support our law enforcement partners as needed.”