Special News Release 17 Jan 19

On/or about 15 Jan 19 an inmate at the Washington County Jail, 101 Westview Avenue, Marietta, Ohio, John Michael Decker, was escorted to a room so he could review his “discovery paperwork”  in reference to his pending charges of aggravated robbery, felonious assault, attempted murder, and others.  Later, Inmate Decker is returned to his dorm and is observed by jail staff near the door to another dorm, talking to his son, Inmate Caleb Michael Smith, who was being held on an unrelated breaking and entering charge.

On 16 Jan 19 at approximately 1302 hours Inmate Smith was observed approaching Inmate Jonathan (JD) Ahart in an aggressive manner, and initiate a fight.  Inmate Smith can be seen punching Inmate Ahart twice, knocking him to the ground both times.  Inmate Smith is then seen putting Inmate Ahart in a headlock and punching him several more times. Inmate Ahart appeared to raise his fists and swing back in self-defense but did not appear to land any punches.  Detectives met with Inmate Smith who admitted he assaulted Inmate Ahart because he learned Ahart had told on his father, John Michael Decker.

Decker, age 42, homeless, and Smith, age 20, 712 Grafton Street, Parkersburg, WV,  are being charged with 1st-degree misdemeanor complicity to assault and 3rd-degree felony complicity to retaliation against a witness.