March 1, 2013
Ohio Governor John Kasich has denied clemency for Frederick Treesh, following the unanimous recommendation of the Ohio Parole Board.
February 28, 2013
The execution of Frederick Treesh is scheduled to occur at 10 am EST, on March 6, 2013, at the Southern Ohio Correction Facility in Lucasville, Ohio. Frederick is convicted of murdering 58-year-old Henry Dupree and attempting to murder 42-year-old Louis Lauver on August 27, 1994, in Cleveland, Ohio. The murders occurred while Frederick, along with an accomplice, was attempting to rob an adult video store. Forty-eight-year-old Frederick has spent the past 17 years on death row.
A clemency plea to the Ohio Parole Board was unanimously rejected. Frederick chose not be interviewed during his clemency hearing. Part of the board’s decision was based on Frederick’s behavior while in prison, which they said was indicative of “a self-indulgent, petulant, and immature individual.” Governor John Kasich has yet to decide if he will grant clemency or follow the ruling of the Ohio Parole Board.
Treesh left Cleveland on August 27, 1994, along with Keisha Harth and Benjamin Brooks, for Ashtabula. The three rented a hotel room to smoke crack cocaine. Later that day, they returned to Cleveland to buy more cocaine. While in Cleveland, the three met Anthony Washington, who joined them. For several hours, the four drove around smoking cocaine. That night, the group decided to rob a business so that they could purchase more cocaine.
Washington directed the group to Vine Street News, an adult bookstore in Eastlake, Ohio. Around 11:30 pm, Treesh and Brooks entered the store armed with a loaded 9 mm handgun and a loaded sawed-off shotgun. They also brought duct tape, which they planned to use to restrain the victims. They looked around before approaching the counter where Louis Lauver was stationed. Treesh pulled out a 9 mm handgun, cocked it, pointed it at Louis, and ordered him not to move or make a sound. Treesh then asked for the location of the armed security guard. Louis pointed him to the back room. Brooks stayed in front with Louis while Treesh went into the back room.
Treesh approached the store security guard Henry Dupree, poked him in the shoulder with the shotgun, and ordered him to stand up. Treesh alleges that he planned to tie him up with Louis using duct tape, but changed his mind, once he saw Henry’s handcuffs. Allegedly, when Treesh reached for the handcuffs, Henry tried to fight him and the gun accidently discharged. Louis later testified that he heard four shots come from the back room right before Treesh emerged from the back room.
While Treesh was in the back room, Brooks ordered Louis to give him the money in the cash register. Treesh and Brooks left when Treesh emerged from the back room. Before exiting, Treesh turned and fired at least two shots towards Louis. Louis was struck in the jaw and forearm. Treesh testified that he was aiming for the phone on the wall, not at Louis. Louis temporarily lost consciousness, but called police once he woke up. Louis survived his injuries, while Henry did not.
Two police officers received a report of the robbery and a description of the car and suspects. Sergeant Ronald Stih and Officer Frederick Stoldt, both from the Euclid Police Department, pursued the suspects. While Washington was driving the car, Brooks and Treesh fired shots from their vehicle towards the police vehicles to stop pursuit. Washington lost control and crashed the car. Treesh and Harth escaped from the vehicle and started running, firing shots behind them. Brooks and Washington remained in the car and were immediately apprehended. Treesh and Harth were apprehended after a short chase on foot.
The robbery and murder in Ohio was the end of a drug induced, multi-state, three-week, increasingly violent crime spree for Treesh and one of his co-defendants. In Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, Treesh and his partner committed a variety of crimes, including robbing various banks and businesses, committing sexual assaults, stealing cars, carjackings, and shooting someone during a Michigan robbery. Treesh has not been prosecuted in other states for his crimes.
While in prison, Frederick has given several interviews talking about the danger of drugs, in the hopes that he can convince kids to stay away from them. “I am living proof of what drugs can do to you. If it saves one kid, then maybe my dying is not in vain, this is the only positive thing I can do to try and help right a wrong,” Frederick explains. Frederick goes on to explain that he is a completely different person when he is on crack cocaine.
Please pray for peace for the family of Henry Dupree. Please pray for peace for Louis Lauver and his family. Please pray for strength for the family of Frederick Treesh. Please pray that Frederick may come to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already found one.