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Lawyer claims police search of car not legal

February 14, 2019 News Extra

Ishemer Ramsey

Filing made in homicide case

When police arrested Ishemer Ramsey on June 10, 2017, to question him about his missing girlfriend, they violated his constitutional right against warrantless seizures and searches, according to Ramsey's lawyer.

At the center of the state's case against Ramsey is a silver Hyundai Tiburon that he was driving the day of his arrest.

“There was no arrest warrant for him; there was no search warrant for him,” Ramsey's attorney, Christopher Capozzi, wrote in his Dec. 31, court filing. “Rather (the) record reflects the Butler City Police wanted to question him, nothing more.”

The two sides are fighting over whether or not the car in question, which was seized by police shortly after Ramsey's arrest, should be allowed into evidence.

Capozzi contends that the car was searched illegally while the prosecution, headed by Butler Assistant District Attorney Terri Schultz, said that the car was obtained legally.

Butler County Judge Timothy McCune is expected to make a decision soon regarding how the case and the car should be handled.

Prosecutors say Ramsey shot Melissa Barto to death in 2017. Her body was discovered on a Lawrence County farm.

Ramsey is charged with criminal homicide, conspiracy to commit homicide, hindering apprehension, abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and conspiracy to commit the latter two crimes.

Read the rest of this story in Thursday's print edition of the Butler Eagle.