Sheriff: Blood found in missing Ohio woman's home

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An Ohio sheriff says blood was found in the home of a missing woman and her two children.

Knox County Sheriff David Barber said Friday authorities are treating the blood as a sign of injuries. The case is considered a missing-persons report.

Investigators say they're looking for Tina Herrmann, her 13-year-old daughter, her 10-year-old son and her friend Stephanie Sprang.

The sheriff says Herrmann's co-worker reported her missing Wednesday. A sheriff's deputy went to her home in Howard twice Wednesday night and found lights on and a pickup truck in the driveway, but no one answered the door.

The investigation prompted an overnight lockdown Friday on the campus of Kenyon College after Herrmann's pickup truck was found nearby.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

HOWARD, Ohio (AP) — Authorities were searching for an Ohio woman, her two children and a female friend in an investigation that prompted an overnight lockdown on the campus of Kenyon College, where the woman's pickup truck was found nearby, a sheriff said Friday. The children's father said blood was discovered in the mother's home.

Her live-in boyfriend said Friday he last heard from the mother on Wednesday morning.

Authorities were searching for 32-year-old, Tina Herrmann, her 13-year-old daughter, Sarah Maynard, and her 10-year-old son, Kody Maynard. Also missing was 41-year-old Stephanie Sprang, a friend with whom Herrmann was planning to get an apartment, said Greg Borders, who said he and Herrmann had recently ended a six-year relationship.

Herrmann's co-worker at a Dairy Queen went to her home in Howard to check on her when she didn't show up for work on Thursday, Knox County Sheriff David Barber told WBNS-TV.

Borders said Herrmann texted him on his way to work at a distribution center about 80 miles away in West Jefferson about 4:40 a.m. Wednesday to let him know that she'd fed the dog. He said the dog, a miniature pinscher named Tanner, was also missing.

The couple were still living together in the split-level house that sits along a rural road despite splitting up several weeks ago, and they were on the verge of losing house after falling a few months behind on their mortgage payments, Borders said.

"We were fairly civil, as civil as you can be living in the same house when you're split up," he told reporters outside the home. He said they argued, but said their fights were never physical.

Herrmann's truck was found on property owned by nearby Kenyon College, about 50 miles northeast of Columbus. Officials there put the campus under an hours-long lockdown until Friday morning. A statement posted on the school's website said "enhanced" security would be in place through at least the weekend.

Borders says he finished his shift 4 p.m. Wednesday and spent the night with a friend. He was playing golf on Thursday when his mother called and said something was wrong with Herrmann.

He didn't think much of it, until he returned to the house in Howard after 5:30 p.m. and found authorities there.

He gave officers permission to search the house and didn't go inside himself. He said a deputy took a few steps into the home and said he saw a considerable mess inside.

"I think something bad happened, something happened inside the house," Borders said. "It's not like Tina or me to leave the house unsecured."

It wasn't clear if the house was unlocked when authorities arrived Thursday.

Barber told WBNS-TV that when Herrmann's co-worker came to the home, she went in and "saw some things out of place." The children's father, Larry Maynard, told the station he talked to the co-worker.

"She went into the home, and when she went into the home, from my understanding, that she seen some blood in the home. And at that point she turned around and left," Maynard said.

Authorities didn't immediately return phone calls seeking comment and Borders said he hadn't heard anything about blood being found.

It was unclear what led to the disappearance of the four, and the sheriff did not elaborate. Maynard said it was unlike Herrmann to go away without letting him know. He did not immediately return messages seeking further comment.

The friend's vehicle was found parked at the home, authorities said.

Herrmann's pickup truck was at the home Wednesday, the sheriff said, but it was found abandoned Thursday night on property owned by Kenyon College. The college ordered a lockdown of all students until 7 a.m. Friday.

The truck was discovered across the road from campus, but was later removed. The sheriff's office told the school that the vehicle was believed to be connected to a crime scene.

Shawn Presley, a college spokesman, said officials did not believe there was any threat to students and that the lockdown — instructing students to go to their residents halls and remain there — was done strictly as a precaution. Authorities did not say whether they found anyone, Presley said.

Sarah Maynard is a 7th grader at East Knox Middle School, where her brother is in the 5th grade, school officials said. The district had staff available if any students were upset about their missing classmates and wanted to talk, Superintendent Matt Caputo said Friday.


Associated Press writers Doug Whiteman and Jeannie Nuss in Columbus, Ohio, and Lisa Cornwell in Cincinnati contributed to this report. Monika Mathur of the News Research Center contributed from New York.