Osborne to be evaluated for Competency

The arraignment of Steven Andrew Osborne, left, 19, of 529 Federal Road, Little Hocking, for attempted murder, felonious assault, tampering with evidence, and having weapons under disability, was facilitated via teleconference Friday between Washington County Common Pleas Court and the Washington County Jail. Also pictured: Judge Mark Kerenyi presiding and attorneys for the prosecution and defense seated at opposing tables in front of a gallery including relations to Osborne.

What’s next:

¯ Osborne would next be scheduled for a competency evaluation to determine whether he is fit to stand trial.

¯ Following such an evaluation a competency hearing would enter that evaluation into the record of the case.

Note: For a full review of remaining indictments from the week’s Washington County Grand Jury report see page A4.

For the full indictment language of Osborne and Caldwell see the bottom of this article.

The Little Hocking man indicted for the attempted murder of Devon Ours will next be evaluated for competency to stand trial.

Steven Andrew Osborne, 19, of 529 Federal Road, appeared from the Washington County Jail on Friday for a bond and arraignment hearing in Washington County Common Pleas Court.

Osborne is one of three defendants, two adults and a minor, charged in the attack upon Ours, of Marietta, which officials say occurred on Feb. 12.

Osborne faces four felony counts with two gun specifications assigned to the highest felonies of attempted murder (first-degree) and felonious assault (second-degree).

The remaining charges include tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony; and having weapons under disability, a third-degree felony rooted in a June 26, 2020, Tennessee incident of an alleged aggravated assault, also a felony according to Washington County Common Pleas Judge Mark Kerenyi.

Washington County Prosecutor Nicole Coil stated in court Thursday that the Tennessee case is pending a trial set for May 8 which included as a condition of bond to not have possession of firearms.

This corrects previous reports by the state that Osborne had already been convicted of a felony in Tennessee.

Kerenyi presided Friday with defense attorney George Cosenza, Coil and Assistant Prosecutor David Silwani all appearing via video from the courtroom with a partially-filled gallery sitting on the defense side of the courtroom behind the wooden barrier.

Cosenza entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity, triggering the next step: a competency evaluation and subsequent hearing on that evaluation to determine if Osborne is fit to stand trial.

“I’m not sure how confident my client is at this time to answer those questions so I just want that on the record,” said Cosenza as Kerenyi began to ask the standard questions of consent to appear via video link, affirm that Osborne is a U.S. citizen and that he is not a U.S. military veteran.

Osborne was indicted following a meeting of the Washington County Grand Jury, during the third week of February, the announcement made five days following the incident which put Ours in critical medical condition and fighting for his life.

“And my understanding of the juvenile they’re going to try to bind over as an adult,” noted Kerenyi, asking if the prosecution hopes to join the three cases of alleged assailants.

Coil confirmed the intention to combine the cases.

While trial dates were scheduled by Kerenyi on Friday for Osborne, they were made with the acknowledgment by all parties that continuances are expected in the case not only due to the complexity of combination but also due to the added time of competency proceedings.

“This is going to set everything out when you file that (insanity plea),” said Kerenyi to Cosenza. “Because obviously, we’re going to have to get an evaluation.”

“And we believe that this would waive a speedy trial issue anyway,” said Cosenza.

Osborne’s bond imposed by Marietta Municipal Court was affirmed by Kerenyi in common pleas for $500,000.

Reports in other media outlets indicating a gag order upon officials concerning the other adult defendant Sierah Caldwell, 18, of 3719 Blue Knob Road, Apt. B, Marietta, could not be confirmed by documented records within the Washington County Clerk of Courts on Friday by press time.

Caldwell was arraigned on Thursday with the same bond amount set by Kerenyi.

See the Friday edition of the Times for that full story.

Argument for bond

“As I discussed (Thursday) at Sierah Caldwell’s bond and arraignment, this was a premeditated crime. It was not just planned that evening through the text messages, which Mr. Osborne stated in his jail calls, that he sent to Mr. Ours to lure him to Sierah Caldwell’s apartment,” argued Coil. “But this started through text messages which occurred three days prior to that crime.”

Coil said in the state’s evidence there are text messages discussing the intent to use a bat upon Ours.

According to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, a bat is a part of the evidence collected, allegedly used in the attack upon Ours.

“There are also two videos on phones that were used during this incident. One video shows Mr. Osborne pacing, while carrying a bat as they wait for Mr. Ours,” described Coil. “After he arrives, the video shows Mr. Osborne and the juvenile in this case ambushing Mr. Ours.”

Coil described an assault of Ours including both Osborne and the juvenile using a baseball bat, fists and feet.

“Mr. Ours can be heard to say ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry.’ Mr. Ours’ speech begins to slur as the attack continues,” she described. “He indicates that he’s trying to leave but he cannot see to be able to find the door to leave the apartment.”

Coil said at this point in the state’s evidence the video shows the entry of a shotgun.

“Mr. Osborne then proceeds to go get a shotgun and attack (Ours) with what he describes in a jail call as ‘pistol-whipping’ Mr. Ours,” she said. “There was no reason for him to go back and to get a gun if he only wanted to teach him a lesson for wanting to have a romantic relationship with Ms. Caldwell.”

At this point in the proceeding slight shifts of bodies in the gallery were visible.

“The only reason he would do that is if he wanted to end (Ours) life,” Coil said. “The length of time it took Mr. Osborne, Ms. Caldwell and the juvenile to contact 911 also shows that there was no concern for the victim’s life.”

She said timestamps of the filmed assault show more than an hour between the alleged attack and the call log for emergency medical care.

Before that call was made, she said, clothes were washed and dried alongside towels; and blood was cleaned up from different parts of the apartment and alleged weapons.

“This time was critical,” she said. “It could have made a difference in Mr. Ours’ prognosis.”

Cosenza stated that the defense was not yet “privy to any of that information” when he shared no objection to the $500,000 bond on Osborne.

“What is most chilling and damning in this case of Mr. Osborne are his own words,” said Coil. “I’m going to tell you some of the words he recited during the first jail call which he made to his father.”

She looked down at her notes on the wooden table.

“‘I set the guy up. I hit him with the bat and I killed him. I cracked him numerous times. I literally beat him to death. I was literally planning on killing him,'” she read.

“He confirms that he was hiding in Sierah’s bedroom with the juvenile until Devon got there … He said he hid the guns and the guns were in Sierah’s bedroom,” Coil said. “Perhaps the worst thing that Mr. Osborne said in the jail calls was that ‘the kid deserved every bit.'”

Janelle Patterson may be reached at jpatterson@mariettatimes.com.

Additional materials

Read the reported indictment language here

Source: Washington County Prosecutor’s Office


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