“We don’t believe that this was a random thing,” Sandusky police Detective Dana Newell said Wednesday. “Until we get some stuff back, we won’t know for sure — and I’m not going to tell people ‘don’t worry’ in this day and age — but we don’t believe we’ve got a serial killer or anything like that. It’s not like somebody (went to Martin’s home) randomly”
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As detectives remain mostly tightlipped about their investigation into the Dec. 3 murder of the 86-year-old, community members have been left speculating on possible motives and suspects.
Firefighters were called to Martin’s home at 2201 Campbell St. at about 8:30 p.m. His attackers had stabbed him multipletimes, then set the house ablaze in an attempt to cover their crimes, Newell said.
Rescue crews discovered Martin’s body in his basement as they worked to tame the flames.
Late last week, detectives reviewed nearby surveillance footage and spotted two people walking to Martin’s home at 7:45 p.m., then leaving in a hurry at 8:28 p.m., just moments before neighbors dialed 911 to report the fire.
Newell is still not discussing a motive for the crimes, nor offering descriptions of the suspects other than saying each were seen wearing jeans, tennis shoes and dark jackets.
He did say there was a tie between Martin and the suspects.
“We believe there was some type of connection” Newell said.
This week, detectives have been meticulously reviewing surveillance footage from dozens of other nearby locations.
In the days since Martin’s murder, Sandusky officers have been pounding the pavement, doing the traditional detective work, Newell said. But they’re also awaiting test results of crucial forensic evidence recovered at the scene.
“This is a case where you need to have both” Newell said.
“It’s good the public is willing to assist us right now, and we appreciate the concerns. There are a lot of things we have to do first to make sure we get it right” he said.
Compared to last summer’s string of Sandusky homicides, in which police made fairly quick arrests, Martin’s case is taking significantly longer.
“Not to say the other cases weren’t, but this one is a little more detailed” Newell said. “It’s different than the other ones”
Though he can’t guarantee an arrest today or this week, Newell, like his fellow Sanduskians, wishes it would come sooner rather than later.
“We’re chomping at the bit,” he said. “But it’s the process we’ve got to do, and we’ve got to do it right”