Two Teens Confess to Playing a Part in Ohio Photographer’s Tragic Death

Two Ohio teens have been taken into custody on charges reckless homicide in connection to photographer Victoria Schafer’s tragic death at Hocking Hills State Park last month. The police had stated that they suspected foul play, and it seems the 16- and 17-year-old teens have confessed to being involved.

As we reported previously, 44-year-old photographer Victoria Schafer was shooting portraits of six high school students near Old Man’s Cave in the Ohio State Park on September 2nd, when she was killed by a falling branch. While this seemed like a tragic accident at first, police later said that they suspected foul play, and Ohio Crime Stoppers offered a $10,000 reward for any information that might lead to arrest and conviction of the responsible parties.

The incentive may have worked. WHIO7 is reporting today that two teens, ages 16 and 17, were arrested by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources yesterday on charges of reckless homicide in connection to Ms. Schafer’s death, and are being held at the juvenile detention center in Lancaster.

According to WBNS10, the Hocking County Sheriff’s Office says investigators “obtained a confession regarding the incident” after interviewing the suspects.

The teens identities have not been revealed, but ODNR Director Mary Mertz thanked the public for their help in apprehending the two suspects, saying, “I appreciate the public’s valuable contributions to this case and the perseverance and determination of the investigators.”

Following up on their original post about the $10,000 reward, Ohio Crime Stoppers posted that they “don’t know yet if any tips we received helped with this,” but that “hopefully this resolves everything for the family.”