Son continues pursuit of mother’s 1966 unsolved homicide, now with state help

In October 1966, 18-month-old Aaron Taylor was also found beaten in his crib. In another room, his mother was found still alive, but barely breathing, on the bedroom floor by her husband after he got dropped off at their Springfield home after work.

Anita Taylor, 20 years old at the time, later died, beginning one of the longest-running cold cases in Ohio that is now being reinvestigated by the Ohio Attorney General’s Cold Case Unit.

The unit investigates and helps solve cold case homicides and unsolved sexual assault cases. It is based at the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and works with local law enforcement agencies to investigate the unsolved cases by offering new forensic analysis and investigative resources, according to BCI spokesman Steve Irwin.

Aaron Taylor has followed his mother’s case for years and maintains an in-depth website about her killing. The website includes decades of news articles and the police report and other information. The Attorney General’s website sends visitors to Aaron’s site, www.taylorcase.com, for more details regarding the case.

After he graduated from high school, Aaron went to work at the Champion Paper in Hamilton driving a forklift to pay for college at Miami University in Oxford. He said he would come home almost every weekend from college between 1983 to 2008.

“I came home every weekend to see grandma. I knew it was her only connection to her daughter. I kind of understand that role and what my existence meant to her, not just as her grandson, but as her grandson that sprung from her daughter that she lost,” said Aaron Taylor, who now lives in Newport, Kentucky.

Clark County Prosecutor Dan Driscoll said revisiting this case is great and something that’s done with all their cases.

“I don’t think that any homicide is ever dead. We continue to work those cases, revisit those cases, and when you get an opportunity to get some new science, take a look at the case evidence, we give that a shot to get some new answers,” he said.

According to the Springfield police report posted to Aaron’s website, officers responded to 432 E. Liberty St. on Oct. 29, 2966 after receiving a call of a beating and rape that took place at the couple’s house on Ludlow Avenue. When they arrived, they met with Anita’s husband, Larry Taylor, and two of his coworkers. Larry told police his wife had been beaten on her head and neck with an unknown object and raped sometime between 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 28 and 1:50 a.m. on Oct. 29.

When officers arrived at the house, they found Anita Taylor in a semi-conscious condition and moaning softly, and they found Aaron laying in his crib, beaten. They also found the back door of the house was standing open, but there were no signs of forced entry, the report stated.

The Fire Division Emergency Squad took both Anita and her son to Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead, the report stated.

According to the police report, Larry told police he left for work around 4 p.m. on Oct. 28 and clocked out around 1:36 a.m. on Oct. 29. He said he rode home with his two coworkers, who stopped to have a drink afterwards at Bill’s Cafe at 1640 Sheridan Avenue. After he was dropped off, he went up to the door and knocked as Anita kept the front door locked. He said he heard the living room TV on and thought he heard moaning sounds from the bedroom, so he forced the door open and found his wife on the floor. He then ran to Bill’s Cafe to get help from his coworkers, who returned to the scene with him.

Existing forensic evidence from the scene excluded Larry Taylor as his wife’s killer. He died in a motorcycle crash in 1978, according to information Aaron received from detectives.

Aaron stated on his website that on the night of Oct. 28, his mom came home from work and began doing laundry with him next to her. He learned from detectives that sometime during the night, someone came to the house. There was no forced entry, but he said the door could be “forced” open if needed as the doors weren’t solid and impenetrable.

“Although I was there, I really can’t remember the night. I underwent hypnotherapy in the late 80′s to attempt to do so, but was unsuccessful,” he stated on his website.

Aaron has recently met with people from both the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation to help work with them on the case regarding his mother, which he said, “was pretty unbelievable.”

“It was very touching, emotional for me. I’ve told the story about mom a million times but having a dozen people in a room that are willing to help you, that was the part that was really touching. I was struggling trying to get the story out, just because you now got all these people that are taking an active interest in trying to help you,” he said.

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