CARROLTON, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio sheriff’s deputy who fatally shot a man following a traffic stop has been acquitted of voluntary manslaughter.
Carroll County deputy Jacob Baker, 30, had faced up to 11 years in prison if convicted in the November 2019 shooting. But a county jury returned a not guilty verdict late Friday afternoon after getting the case earlier in the day.
Baker fatally shot Robert Sikon III, 41, of Carrollton, after the two men “tussled” before Sikon ran and was shot in the back. Authorities have said an arrest warrant had been issued in September 2019 for Sikon, who was accused of failing to pay child support.
Baker’s attorney, Kimberly Corral, told jurors that Sikon grabbed at the deputy’s duty belt, near his weapon during the struggle, and DNA was found on the holster attached to the belt. Prosecutors countered that Sikon had no weapon and "got shot four times in the back that day for running away.”
Baker had been on paid administrative leave since the shooting. It wasn't clear Monday if or when he might he return to work. He had been a deputy in Carroll County for 15 months prior to the shooting and before that was a Carrollton village police officer for a year.