LEBANON, Ind. — A Thorntown man has been charged in connection with a September triple slaying in Lebanon that investigators say was fueled by a long-running feud.
According to the Lebanon Police Department, 40-year-old Chad Grimball faces three counts of murder, along with a count each of carrying a handgun without a license, carrying a firearm without a license and unlawful possession of a firearm by a domestic batterer.
Grimball has been held at the Boone County Jail since Oct. 7 on a firearms charge. Lebanon police filed charges with the prosecutor’s office on Monday.
“The Lebanon Police Department would like to thank our community for your help and support,” the department said in a statement. “Detectives and members of the Boone County Prosecutor’s Office will continue to work diligently until the conclusion of this case and all involved are held accountable.”
On Sept. 8, officers with the Lebanon Police Department responded to the 400 block of East Walnut Street, where they found three people dead. Each had been shot in the head.
The victims were identified as 19-year-old Grace Bishop, 20-year-old Brannon Martin and 42-year-old Larry Stogsdill Jr., all of Lebanon.
Stogsdill is the father of Brannon Martin. Grace Bishop is Brannon’s girlfriend.
According to the sprawling 46-page probable cause affidavit, the triple slaying resulted from an ongoing feud involving one of the victims and a friend of the suspect.
Grimball’s friend is behind bars in Boone County on unrelated charges and told the suspect that people at jail are accusing him of cooperating with police and being a snitch. He believed Stogsdill was behind the rumors.
Grimball and his friend talked to each other on the phone before and after the murders.
Just 50 hours before the homicides, Grimball was recorded saying, “I’m fixing to rid you of your problem. I’ll fix it.”
For their part, the victim’s family is just relieved the accused killer has been caught.
“The family and I are really pleased about the amount of work and dedication these cops and detectives have put into this investigation. We’re a little pleased, but going into the holidays, it’s going to be hard,” said Stephanie Spencer.
Putting the pieces together took investigators several months. Cell phone records, location data, interviews with multiple witnesses, and DNA evidence eventually led them to Grimball.
A brother and sister had been at the apartment building to get drugs. One of them saw Grimball but didn’t know his name. She was convinced he was the person who killed the victims, according to court documents.
Other witnesses at the apartment building saw a man in jean shorts leave around the same time of the murders. Police believe they saw Grimball and used photo lineups to confirm their suspicions.
When questioned, Grimball told police he hasn’t had a gun since he had a shotgun as a kid. However, surveillance footage showed Grimball was with his girlfriend when she bought a handgun at a Rural King in Frankfort on Aug. 20, 2021. They also bought ammunition, a pistol case and some targets.
His girlfriend also told police he didn’t have a gun because he wasn’t allowed to (he was convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence in Ohio in 2001 and intimidation in Marion County in 2016). Police then showed her the surveillance video and proof of the gun transaction.
She then admitted she’d bought him the gun.
Grimball had also shown at least two coworkers a new gun he’d recently acquired.
Grimball told police he wasn’t in the area during the murders. However, pings from cell phone towers show he and his girlfriend were in close proximity between 5:40 p.m. and about 6:02 p.m. on Sept. 8. Separate Google data showed Grimball had location services turned off, while his girlfriend had her location services turned on; according to the Google data, she was in the area during the murders.
Police believe she drove Grimball to the murder scene.
Not long after the murders, Grimball showed up at a friend’s house. He’d hastily changed clothes and kept “rapping” about killing people, the friend told investigators. Grimball said something about “three people” and told his friend to watch the news. At that point, the murders hadn’t been reported. His friend described the behavior as bizarre.
Other evidence in the case included DNA on cigarette butts that matched Grimball’s profile. Police also believe a shoeprint found at the scene matches a Nike shoe Grimball was known to wear.