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The Suburbanite
  • Jury hears from teen defendant in Craigslist killings trial

  • During a second interview Brogan Rafferty admitted to digging some holes for Beasley on property in Noble County, but said he though the holes were for drainage pipes.

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  • Summit County Common Pleas Court jurors spent Thursday morning hearing audio recordings of Brogan Rafferty talking to investigators about his connections to Richard Beasley and the Craigslist murders.
    Rafferty ended an initial interview by telling investigators that he needed a lawyer. During a second interview he admitted to digging some holes for Beasley on property in Noble County, but said he thought the holes were for drainage pipes. Rafferty also told investigators that he didn’t fear Beasley.
    The 17-year-old Rafferty is on trial for aggravated murder, aggravated robbery, kidnapping and theft for his alleged involvement in the deaths of three men and the shooting of a fourth. The trial is in its second week before Judge Lynne S. Callahan.
    Beasley, 53, of Akron, faces similar charges. His trial is set for January.
    Prosecutors have argued that Rafferty was a willing accomplice of Beasley, who used a Craigslist ad seeking a farm caretaker to lure victims who he apparently killed to steal their identity and property. The defense wants to prove that Rafferty was threatened and manipulated by Beasley.
    Sgt. Jason Mackie, detective with the Noble County Sheriff’s Department, testified that he and an FBI agent first interviewed Rafferty on Nov. 16 in the offices at Stow High School. In that 25-minute conversation — played for the jury — Rafferty is told that Beasley has been arrested and then the teen is asked if he’s been to Marietta or Caldwell with the older man. “If you say I was there, I was there,” Rafferty is heard to tell investigators.
    When asked why he was going to Noble County with Beasley, the boy replies, “I don't know.”
    The first interview ends when Rafferty is told that his car and house will be searched. “If you're searching my property and whatnot, I think I need a lawyer present,” the teen tells investigators.
    Later in the day, after the FBI searched the Rafferty home, the teen agreed to a second interview with his parents and stepfather present. Rafferty offers more details about trips to Noble County, but says he never saw Beasley with a gun and never saw anyone get shot. Rafferty acknowledged driving Beasley and David Pauley, 51, of Norfolk, Va., to the farm, but said Beasley told him Pauley was set up for the job.
    After the second interview, Rafferty showed Mackie where he could find pieces he cut from a shotgun that belonged to Pauley.