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Grand jury likely to hear case involving fatal shooting

By IVY KELLER • Jan 12, 2017 at 10:55 PM

A rural New London man charged in connection with a fatal shooting likely will have his case presented to a grand jury.

Trent W. McCullough, 53, most recently of 3741 Prospect Road, attended his preliminary hearing Thursday at Norwalk Municipal Court.

McCullough is charged with reckless homicide in connection with a Jan. 4 incident at his home. McCullough reportedly admitted to fatally shooting George Ely, 49, with a .45-caliber firearm. The Huron County Sheriff’s Office investigated the fatal shooting.

McCullough appeared with his attorney, Daniel Wightman, in court.

Judge Eric Weisenburger sent the case to Huron County Common Pleas Court, where a grand jury likely will hear the case and decide whether formal felony charges are warranted.

Weisenburger declined to lower the defendant’s bond, which is set at $150,000. If he posts bond, McCullough is prohibited from touching or possessing firearms or living in a home where guns are present.

Wightman objected to the bond, calling it unreasonably high. Weisenberger acknowledged the attorney’s concern, but said the bond would be reviewed in common pleas court.

Deputies responded to the report of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at the Fitchville Township defendant’s home Jan. 4. 

“I actually interviewed Mr. McCullough and during my conversation he was overcome by the grief that his friend was injured,” Sheriff Todd Corbin said shortly after the incident. “He admitted that he didn’t mean to shoot his friend."

Detective Sgt. Bill Duncan obtained a search warrant for the residence following McCullough's arrest. Deputies recovered drug paraphernalia and firearms during a search of the house.

“It was a marijuana grow operation,” Corbin said, referring to the drug paraphernalia.

Ely, the victim, was transported to the Fisher-Titus Medical Center emergency room, where he was pronounced dead.

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