Defendant seeks acquittal in Fairfield murder

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Defendant seeks acquittal in Fairfield murder

The last of five people convicted in connection with a botched robbery that ended with the shooting death of Fairfield’s Julian Slaven will not be sentenced until next month after the court considers a motion for acquittal.

Christa Frymire, 20, of Fairfield, was convicted by a jury last month of aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary but was found not guilty of murder. She was scheduled to be sentence Monday morning by Butler County Common Pleas Judge Patricia Oney, but that hearing has been rescheduled for Dec. 2.

Attorney Melynda Cook has filed a motion to acquit Frymire of the first-degree felonies citing incorrect jury instruction.

“During deliberations, the jury had two questions which were focused upon the knowledge of defendant as a complicitor as it pertained to the weapon used in the offenses of aggravated burglary and aggravated robbery,” Cook wrote in the motion. “This court, over objections by counsel for the defendant, and at the urging of the prosecutor, provided answers to these questions which in essence negated the jury instructions previously given.”

Cook said the jury was given an answer by the judge about knowledge of a deadly weapon in the commission of the crime that was in contradiction to the 35 pages of written jury instructions.

Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said his office could not comment on pending cases.

Frymire faces 28 years in prison. The motion for acquittal is expected to be argued on Dec. 2.

Prosecutors acknowledged Frymire did not pull the trigger on the night of Nov. 24 when the five conspired to rob Slaven of marijuana and money, but she was an “aider and abettor” in the crimes.

Frymire, who was co-defendant Jerry Eacholes’ girlfriend, was behind the wheel, driving the van to the Slaven residence on the night of the murder, according to prosecutors

Testimony from Misty Williams, also a co-defendant and Frymire’s friend, along with text messages prove Frymire knew about the plot and about the gun.

But Cook said Frymire was out of the loop in the plan to rob Slaven and was only the driver to the residence for what she thought was a drug purchase.

Eacholes, 26, of Middletown, was found guilty Oct. 7 of murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary, but the jury did not convict him on the gun specifications. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

Joseph Goodin, 26, of Middletown, who fired the shot that killed 19-year-old Slaven, pleaded guilty in April and was sentenced to 18 years to life in prison. His attorney said the fatal shot was fired by accident.

In June, Williams, 19, of Hamilton also received an 18 years to life sentence after admitting guilt to the same charges.

Slaven and Williams were childhood friends, and she was the person who placed the call setting up the robbery and shooting, according to prosecutors.

Anthony Givens, 21, of Hamilton, pleaded guilty in April and was sentenced to 18 years to life for his part in the incident.

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