Baker

Baker, Fletcher make first court appearances

GREENVILLE—Two persons of interest in the homicide investigation of a local man appeared in Darke County Common Pleas Court on Wednesday afternoon. Judge Jonathan P. Hein presided.

Dean M. Baker, 35, of Greenville and Ashlee R. Fletcher, 37, of Greenville, were previously wanted in connection to the death of Corey Fleming.

Baker appeared on one count of tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony. If convicted he faces up to three years incarceration and a maximum fine of up to $10,000, none of which is mandatory.

Fletcher appeared on one count of having weapons while under disability, a fourth-degree felony. If convicted, she faces up to 18 months incarceration and a maximum fine of up to $5,000, none of which is mandatory.

Baker was appointed public defender Randall Breadan, and Fletcher was appointed public defender David Rohrer.

The two were taken into custody at a truck stop near Ocala, Florida on the evening of August 24, 2022. Darke County Sheriff Mark Whittaker requested the assistance of the United States Marshals Service to capture the fugitives.

Fleming, 30, was reported missing by family to the Union City, Ohio Police Department on August 18, 2022. The Greenville Police Department also began an investigation in the City of Greenville as a result of suspicious circumstances connected to Fleming’s disappearance. This joint investigation led out in to rural areas of Darke County.

Investigators from the Darke County Sheriff’s Office and Greenville Police Department discovered a shallow grave during a search on the property of a commercial poultry operation in northwest Darke County on Saturday, August 20, 2022. The Darke County Coroner’s Office was notified and responded to the scene. Fleming’s body was discovered in the grave.

The case is being treated as a homicide and is still under investigation by the Darke County Sheriff’s Office, Greenville Police Department and the Darke County Coroner’s Office.

During Baker’s appearance, on the topic of bail, Darke County Assistant Prosecutor Debra Quigley noted the couple’s attempt at fleeing the state.

“The state would note that when this investigation started, and the defendant was becoming the target of the investigation, the defendant fled to the state of Florida,” she said. “He attempted to conceal the identity of the vehicle they were in, by stealing license plates, and changing the plates of the car they were in to a different vehicle. The state believes he is a great flight risk.”

Quigley requested bail be set at $150,000 cash surety property for both Baker and Fletcher.

Baker’s bond was set at $100,000 cash surety property, and Fletcher’s bond was set at $50,000 cash surety property. They will both appear next on Tuesday, Sept. 6 for preliminary hearings.

Darke County Common Pleas Court hearings are available to stream on YouTube at: https://tinyurl.com/commonpleas.

Fletcher

Abigail Miller / Editor

Abigail Miller is a Greenville native, Kent State graduate, writer, shopaholic and friend. Contact Darke County Now Reporter Abigail Miller at amiller@darkecountynow.com.

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