The Monday meeting of the Washington C.H. City Council saw the adoption of a resolution remembering the murder of Lillien McCarty and expressing that McCarty’s murderer, Rusty Mootispaw, should not be paroled.
In 1981, Mootispaw pleaded guilty to the murder of 85-year-old McCarty. The coroner’s report detailing McCarty’s death noted that she “died as the result of a cardiopulmonary arrest due to blunt impacts to the head with subarachnoid hemorrhage.”
Mootispaw is set to appear before the parole board on Dec. 14.
Council’s resolution reads in part, “That all who read this resolution shall note that in the history of the City of Washington Court House no similar action by this City Council has ever been taken. In the memory of the community, the murder of Lily McCarty, an elderly defenseless woman, no threat to any person remains an event that challenges our sense of peace. We plead that our sense of peace already challenged by the act of murder committed by Rusty Eugene Mootsipaw be not further disturbed by his parole.”
According to Mootispaw’s latest appeal, the affidavit states that Mootispaw pleaded guilty “in lieu of facing a jury and imposition of the death penalty.” Mootispaw argued that the affidavit was newly-discovered evidence establishing the State of Ohio threatening him with the death penalty if he would not plead to the murder charge.
The Court denied Mootispaw’s appeal, replying that Ohio did not have the death penalty at the time of Mootispaw’s conviction. Ohio’s death penalty statute was temporarily repealed in 1978 and was not active again until Oct. 19, 1981, after Mootispaw was convicted.
In other business at the council meeting, a proposal to rezone 1049 Washington Ave. from Residential Office (RO) to Neighborhood Business (B1) passed second reading. An additional reading of the legislation remains in order for the ordinance to become law.
Council also commenced first reading of the annual appropriation for the upcoming 2016 year. The 2016 appropriation strengthens safety services and funds several capital projects. Included in the 2016 appropriation are engineering funds for Washington Avenue, money to rehabilitate the water tower near YUSA and increased funding for street paving.
In further money legislation, council heard first reading on the only supplemental appropriation for the current 2015 year. The legislation is a net negative appropriation of slightly more than $66,000. Supplemental appropriations are used by the community to amend the original annual appropriation and balance accounting funds.
In the spirit of the holiday season, every member of council wished a happy Thanksgiving to the community and Joe Denen, City Manager, reminded everyone of the Sunday, Nov. 29 Christmas Parade and other uptown events of the same day. Planned activities for Sunday include 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. kids’ crafts at the City Building along with Santa pictures from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The popular horse carriage rides are returning this year from noon to 3 p.m.