Fort Recovery teen charged in Indiana murder scheme

By J Swygart -



PORTLAND, Ind. — A Fort Recovery woman has been arrested as the third suspect in the Jan. 12 murder of an Indiana man.

According to court records, Hannah L. Knapke, 18, was charged Tuesday in Jay Circuit Court with murder.

She was arrested Wednesday and is currently being held without bond in the Jay County jail.

Knapke is one of three suspects jailed in connection with the death of 31-year-old Portland, Indiana, resident Shea Briar, who was shot to death Jan. 12.

Two former softball coaches at Fort Recovery High School, 29-year-old Esther Stephen and 18-year-old Shelby Hiestand, both of Portland, were arrested last week for their roles in the murder.

According to numerous media outlets, police believe Briar’s murder was motivated by a custody dispute concerning a child he had with Stephen. The police said Stephen and Hiestand admitted to setting up and killing Briar.

According to the authorities, Knapke loaned the women her vehicle because it would not be recognized if someone observed it during the commission of the crime. A probable cause affidavit indicates Knapke was with the other two suspects when the shooting occurred. Knapke was located in Marshalltown, Iowa, where she was interviewed by detectives.


By J Swygart

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