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  • Writer's pictureJoe Lyons

Former Ashland Firefighter Sentenced in Tampering with Evidence Case

Former Ashland Firefighter Sentenced in Tampering with Evidence Case


Aaron Drushell,34, a former Ashland firefighter, faced sentencing yesterday in Ashland County Common Pleas Court, after pleading guilty to one count of felony third-degree tampering with evidence. The case stems from an incident where Drushell was accused of destroying or concealing evidence related to an alleged crime.


The charges against Drushell initially included five counts of felony first-degree rape, one count of felony first-degree kidnapping, and one count of felony fourth-degree gross sexual imposition, in addition to the tampering with evidence charge. However, following a trial that resulted in a hung jury, Drushell and his attorney, James J. Mayer III, negotiated a plea agreement. The agreement involved Drushell withdrawing his former plea of not guilty and entering a plea of guilty to the tampering with evidence charge. Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Denise J. Salerno, along with the victim, agreed to dismiss all other charges as part of the agreement.


Tampering with evidence, as defined by Ohio Revised Code § 2921.12, encompasses actions such as destroying, altering, concealing, or removing items that could be used in the investigation or prosecution of a crime. It also includes providing false documents or objects to obstruct a criminal investigation. The maximum penalty for this offense includes a prison term of up to 36 months and a fine of up to $10,000.00.


During the sentencing hearing, Honorable Judge David R. Stimpert ordered a 36-month prison sentence for Drushell, but suspended the sentence. Instead, Drushell was placed on probation for a period of three years. Additionally, Judge Stimpert ordered Drushell to spend 90 days at the Richland County Community Alternative Center, located at 597 Park Ave E, Mansfield, OH. Drushell was given until June 15, 2024, to complete this requirement. Failure to do so would result in serving the remaining time in the Ashland County Jail. Drushell was also ordered to pay court costs totaling $4,232.00.


The conclusion of this legal journey underlines the importance of accountability within the criminal justice system. While the outcome may not entirely satisfy all parties involved, it represents a significant step toward closure.

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