Teen arrested in double homicide

STEUBENVILLE – A 16-year-old male was taken into custody Thursday facing charges in connection with a double homicide Wednesday evening at the Heritage Place Apartments on Market Street, Steubenville Police reported.

Police Chief William McCafferty said Ryan Toson, 21, and Otavus Wilson, 19, both of Steubenville, were taken to Trinity Medical Center West with multiple gunshot wounds, where they were both pronounced dead.

Officers were called around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday to the apartments in the 800 block of Market Street about shots fired. Police found both men on the ground.

McCafferty said a large caliber handgun was used in the shooting.

The 16-year-old suspect was arrested around 2 a.m. Thursday, McCafferty said, adding police still are investigating a possible motive. The suspect was taken to the county juvenile detention center.

McCafferty said the gunman walked up to the two victims, shot one, and then the other and then shot them again.

The chief said, “We were able to solve this with the cooperation from citizens.”

A large group of people gathered around the crime scene after the shooting, the chief said.

McCafferty said the juvenile has an assault charge from 2011 and a petit theft charge from 2010 and was a suspect in another assault case.

Police also were called around noon Wednesday for a report of a shot fired in the 700 block of Market Street and discovered a handrail outside the Heritage Place Apartments was struck with a bullet. Police also were called around 7:38 p.m. Wednesday to the 1500 block of Maryland Avenue and around 8:45 p.m. Wednesday to the 1200 block of Pennsylvania Avenue for shots fired. Police checked both areas and found no evidence of shots fired.

McCafferty said he doesn’t believe those incidents were related to the homicides.

(Law can be contacted at mlaw@heraldstaronline.com)