Woman charged with murder in Van Wert killing

Greg Sowinski 419-993-2090 •

November 15, 2013

VAN WERT — Police arrested a woman wanted in connection with the shooting death of a person and the wounding of another Friday.

Tamara K. Menke, 47, remained in the Van Wert County jail, where she was brought at 2:30 p.m. Friday, an officer at the Van Wert County Correctional Facility said.

Menke was being held on the charge of first-degree felony murder. A judge set bond at $1 million, with a preliminary hearing scheduled for Thursday. Other charges are pending in the case.

The Van Wert Police Department confirmed the identity of the person killed as Barbara Robinson. A man at the home reportedly was shot in the leg and was in a hospital in Fort Wayne, Ind.. Van Wert Police Chief Joel Hammond has not released that victim’s name pending discharge from the hospital.

At 2 a.m. Friday, Hammond put out a written statement saying Menke was on the run dressed in camouflage and should be considered armed and dangerous. After conducting a search in conjunction with the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Van Wert post, Menke was arrested at 9:59 a.m. Friday by the Van Wert County Sheriff’s Office. She was then turned over to the Van Wert Police Department at 10:14 a.m.

Efforts to reach Hammond were unsuccessful Friday.

Police received a call at 6:02 p.m. Thursday of a shooting at 223 S. Fulton St. Officers responded to the home and found two people shot. That home is owned by John R. Robinson, according to records from the Van Wert County Auditor’s Office.

Both victims were taken first to Van Wert County Hospital following the shootings, police said.

The crime remains under investigation.