Remarkable Ohio

Serpent Mound Marker

Home / Van Wert County / 2-81 Killing Spree Ends Here in 1948 [4]

Title, side A
Killing Spree Ends Here in 1948
Text, side A
One of Ohio's greatest manhunts ended here on the morning of July 23, 1948. Robert M. Daniels and John C. West, parolees from the state prison in Mansfield, had gone on a killing spree that left six people dead. Driving west on U.S. Route 224 in a stolen auto transport truck, the pair approached this intersection and encountered a roadblock. It was manned by Van Wert County Sheriff Roy Shaffer, Frank Friemoth, the county game warden, and Sergeant Leonard Conn of the Van Wert city police. West was driving the truck; Daniels was asleep in a car overhead. As Sheriff Shaffer climbed onto the truck and apprehended Daniels, West leaped from the cab and shot Conn in the chest and Friemoth in the arm. Conn returned fire and killed West. The officers survived their wounds. Daniels was convicted, sentenced to die, and electrocuted at the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus on January 3, 1949. This marker pays tribute to all law enforcement officers who risk their lives to protect the citizens of their communities.
SE corner of US 224 and Stemen Road
Van Wert, OH 45891
Latitude: 40.9317330, Longitude: -84.4758730.
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