GPS helped cops close in on Ohio slaying suspects

BARBERTON, Ohio (AP) — GPS surveillance of a violent ex-convict's ankle bracelet places him at the scene of a New Year's Eve home invasion and shooting in northeast Ohio that left a man and his two teenage children dead, according to court documents.

Because of the bracelet Eric Donta Hendon was wearing, detectives had closed in on him within 48 hours of the home invasion and shooting in Barberton, the Akron Beacon Journal ( ) reported Thursday.

Hendon and his 22-year-old brother, Michael Deon Hendon, pleaded not guilty to murder during a court hearing Wednesday. Both are charged with three counts of murder. More charges, including a potential death penalty specification, will be considered by the county grand jury on Jan. 16.

They are being held on $10 million bonds. Their attorneys declined to comment.

Ashley Carpenter, 18, and David Carpenter-Kohler, 14, died from gunshot wounds to the head. Their father, John Kohler, and his girlfriend, Ronda Blankenship, were left critically wounded. Kohler, 42, was removed from life support on Friday. Blankenship, 38, remains hospitalized.

Police arrested the Hendon brothers on Friday.

Eric Hendon was released from prison in June after finishing a 13-year sentence for shooting a woman. He was 17 at the time of the shooting but was tried as an adult and eventually pleaded guilty to attempted murder.

After returning to Akron from prison, he remained under the supervision of a parole officer. As part of his parole requirements, Hendon wore a GPS ankle bracelet so his movements could be tracked by the electronic monitoring program.

Police contend the GPS linked to Eric Hendon's ankle bracelet placed him "in the immediate area" of Kohler's home for six minutes starting at 6:42 p.m. Dec. 31. Eight minutes later, a seriously wounded Blankenship called 911 to report that two men had shot people in the house.