November 27, 2014

Elyria
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Police: Suspect was unaware that woman was dead

Adam Grimes and attorney Kenneth Lieux look at prosecutors Thursday during Grimes’ pretrial hearing on murder charges in Lorain County Common Pleas Court. (CT photo by Bruce Bishop.)

ELYRIA — Adam Grimes didn’t know his friend Melanie Hruby was dead until after an officer told him, according to police testimony during Grimes’ pre-trial.

Melanie Hruby poses for a photo with her son, Brandon.

Grimes, 25, is accused of beating and strangling Hruby during an argument at his house Dec. 18. Officers arrived at his parents’ home, at 10140 Avon Belden Road, to find Hruby’s body in an upstairs bedroom.

Police were sent to the home after a friend of Grimes called 911 and told a dispatcher that Grimes had “hurt or killed his girlfriend.” She said Grimes called her and said he was driving Hruby’s van and planned to return to his house to see if she was all right.

Lorain County sheriff’s Sgt. Donald McCurry testified at Grimes’s pretrial Thursday that Grimes was upset after he told him that Hruby was dead.

“He was upset and started crying,” McCurry said. “He knew he had harmed her to a significant degree, but he kept asking me if she was OK.”

After McCurry’s testimony and comments from Grimes’s attorney, Kenneth Lieux, and the prosecutor, Scott Strait, Elyria Municipal Court Judge Gary Bennett determined that there was probable cause to send the case to the county grand jury.

Grimes is facing aggravated murder and felonious assault charges.

According to testimony from McCurry, Grimes surrendered to police Dec. 18 after he was surrounded outside the home. McCurry said Grimes told police that he and Hruby were using crack cocaine and heroin earlier that day and returned to his house, where they began arguing.

Grimes told police Hruby wanted to leave, and he didn’t want her to. He said he hit Hruby, she hit him back, and he hit her again, knocking her unconscious. He later carried Hruby upstairs and admitted to choking her, McCurry said.

Dr. Stephen Evans, Lorain County coroner, ruled that Hruby’s death was from blunt force trauma and strangulation. He said there were several marks on her body consistent with being hit by a fist multiple times.

The toxicology test results on Hruby’s body were not available Thursday.

McCurry said investigators found marks on Hruby’s neck but only on the right side. He said Hruby was found facedown in the bedroom with puffy eyes.

Grimes’ parents were home when police arrived, but his mother said she was sleeping. Grimes’ father said he saw Hruby’s van at the home, according to the testimony.

Hruby’s family has said Grimes had been stalking Hruby and that the two were not dating. They said Hruby had used drugs but was trying to clean herself up with plans to go back to school.

Lieux said, despite claims from Hruby’s family, an investigation showed that Grimes and Hruby were friendly.

“It’s a known fact that she had a relationship with him. … Her personal things were at the house,” he said.

Lieux said he questions whether his client is responsible for Hruby’s death. He said investigators have only proven that the two had been involved in a physical altercation, but not that Grimes had killed Hruby.

“They still haven’t established the manner and cause of death,” he said. “I’m certainly suspecting a drug overdose.”

Grimes will remain at Lorain County Jail with no bond until his trial.

Contact Chelsea Miller at 329-7123 or cmiller@chroniclet.com.