Footprints at crime scene lead to arrest in Ooltewah homicide
Footprints left behind at a crime scene led to an arrest in the Ooltewah homicide, according to an arrest report by the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office.
Investigators say the footprints matched the shoes Rodney Gearing was wearing when he was brought in for questioning a few hours after Gary McPherson’s body was found. Deputies arrested Gearing Tuesday night on Old Cleveland Pike, which is about a mile and a half from the crime scene.
The report says on July 23, McPherson's brother went to check on him and noticed a broken window. He went inside and found McPherson laying on the living room floor surrounded by blood and broken glass from a table.
Witnesses told deputies they saw Gearing the night before with injuries on his left arm and ear. They say he had a large amount of cocaine and a gun. The report says text messages revealed Gearing was trying to sell the gun, which belonged to McPherson and was missing from the crime scene.
About three hours after McPherson’s body was found, Gearing was taken in for questioning. Detectives say he had reddish brown stains on his clothing. Those clothes along with Gearing's shoes were sent to a TBI lab for testing.
On Monday the results came back, matching Gearing’s shoes to the footprints investigators found next to McPherson's body.
Gearing appeared in court on Wednesday, but was assigned another court date which is September 7.
This is not the first time Gearing has been in trouble with the law. Court records show he has faced assault, aggravated burglary and robbery charges.
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