A Delaware County judge set bond Friday at $1 million for a Columbus physician accused in the rape and murder of a 23-year-old pregnant woman.
Ali Salim, 44, a permanent U.S. resident who lives on Columbus’ Northeast Side near New Albany, pleaded not guilty today to a nine-count indictment. Salim worked until July at Knox Community Hospital in Mount Vernon.
The indictment charged Salim with murder in the deaths of both Deanna Ballman and her unborn child, accusing him of raping the woman, providing a fatal dose of heroin and dumping her body.
Ballman’s body was found on Aug. 1, a day after she told her mother at her Pataskala home that she was responding to a Craigslist ad online in hopes of earning some money to help support her two children, then ages 1 and 3.
Salim was indicted this week on two counts each of murder and tampering with evidence and single counts of rape, felonious assault, kidnapping, corrupting another with drugs and abuse of a corpse.
Ballman’s body was found on Aug. 1 in the back seat of her car, which was parked on a rural road in Delaware County..
Investigators quickly homed in on Salim, removing a computer and other items from his home at 5077 Turner Close.
By Laura Arenschield - The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio (MCT)
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