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Jury selected, opening statements heard in Reagan Tokes trial

Brian Lee Golsby is accused of the kidnapping, rape and murder of Ohio State student Reagan Tokes. Credit: Courtsey of Grove City Police Facebook page

A jury has been selected for the trial of Brian Golsby, the man accused of the kidnapping, rape and murder of Ohio State student Reagan Tokes.

The 12-person jury, with four alternates, was selected from more than 150 candidates, many of whom were excused during the selection process because of their previous knowledge on the case due to its pretrial publicity.

Golsby, a convicted sexual offender, was released from prison with a GPS monitor in November 2016. He could face the death penalty if found guilty of the aggravated murder in the death of Tokes, a 21-year-old psychology major set to graduate last May.

Investigators say Golsby followed Tokes to her car after she left work at Bodega in the Short North Feb. 8, 2017, and kidnapped her at gunpoint. Her body was found in a park 10 miles southwest of Columbus the following afternoon.

Golsby was arrested two days after Tokes’ body was found.

Once the jury was selected Monday, both Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien and Golsby’s defense attorney Kort Gatterdam gave brief opening statements.

Once the jury was selected Monday, both Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien and Golsby’s defense attorney Kort Gatterdam gave brief opening statements.

O’Brien spent his time touching on several pieces of evidence he plans to use to prove Golsby is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, such as DNA evidence recovered from the rape kit performed on Tokes and GPS data from Golsby’s ankle monitor.

Gatterdam said Golsby deserves the presumption of innocence given to all defendants, and said the state must prove that Golsby had planned to murder Tokes to find him guilty of aggravated murder.  

A jury must make a unanimous decision to recommend the death penalty, and the final decision is left with the judge presiding over the case.

Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Mark Serrott will begin hearing testimonies Tuesday.

One comment

  1. Just a bit of clarification the final decision is not up to the judge in death penalty cases. The jury are the only people who give the sentences in these type of case, either death or life without parole, life with parole after 25 or 30 years.

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