KIRKERSVILLE, OH (WCMH) — The man accused of killing Kirkersville Police Chief Eric Disario and two nursing home employees has been identified.
Family members identified 43-year-old Thomas Hartless as the shooter.
His cousin, who did not want to go on camera, told NBC4’s Shawn Lanier that Hartless did not live in Kirkersville. His girlfriend worked at the nursing home where the shooting happened and was identified as one of the victims.
Video from Chopper 4 shows investigators searching a home on the 300 block of Oakland Avenue in Utica, Ohio. The home was listed as Hartless’ address in recent police reports and court documents.
Connie Long lives across the street from Hartless’ parents’ home, where he often stayed in Utica.
Back in March, she said she helped rescue his girlfriend, Marlina Medrano, after he had brutally beaten her.
“She ran for our door and he drove in the yard. He accelerated, almost ran her over clear in our yard,” said Long. “She was bleeding from her head and face, shaking terribly, difficulty breathing.”
Long is medic and was able to treat her injuries, inside of her home.
“I said that day if we had not been home, I really felt he would’ve killed her on the porch that day, just kind of got prolonged I guess,” said Long.
According to court documents, Hartless was sentenced on March 23rd to 90 days in jail for the attack. He was released on April 11th.
“I knew once they let him out, revenge would be on his mind,” said Long
“I called and I called and I called and it was like I had no voice, so now that we have a police officer dead and these other innocent people dead, maybe someone will listen,” said Long.
Hartless has been accused of killing Medrano and two others, including a police chief at a nursing home on Friday.
“Sad day, but also frustrating because it could’ve been prevented and that’s the part that’s really hard to swallow,” said Long. “The judicial system, I don’t know where the break is, but there’s definitely something that needs addressed.”
In 2010, Hartless was sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to charges of aggravated assault and aggravated menacing. He originally faced kidnapping and felonious assault charges in those cases.
After serving eight months in prison, Hartless was granted a judicial release and placed on community control for three years.