Slain woman had reported being battered by Paulding Co. murder suspect

Crime

The man wanted in the death of a woman found shot to death inside a garage in Paulding County Sunday has been captured – 1,800 miles west in Nevada.

A spokesperson from the Elko County Sheriff’s Department in Nevada said Matthew J. Dempsey was arrested in Carlin, 400 miles north of Las Vegas. 

Dempsey was wanted on a murder charge related to the death of 47-year-old Gina L. Mann. Mann’s body was found Sunday afternoon in a car in a garage behind a home at 7546 Road 87 in Briceton, approximately six miles southwest of Paulding.

After the discovery, Paulding County Sheriff Jason Landers said police were looking for the 46-year-old Dempsey, Mann’s boyfriend. A murder warrant was issued for him Sunday.

Police said he may have been driving a tan 2002 Buick Regal sedan with Ohio plate GYR4176.

Landers said Tuesday that Dempsey was stopped for a moving violation around 8:30 a.m. Nevada time. Landers said there was a “short standoff” with Dempsey, who was armed with a .22 long rifle, before he eventually surrendered and was taken into custody.

According to a Carlin Police press release, officers tried to pull Dempsey over for making an illegal turn. They noticed he was not stopping, and saw him remove a gun from the floorboard of the car while still driving. The release said Dempsey pulled over three blocks later.

Officers said when they approached him Dempsey held the rifle to his head, and threatened to kill himself. Officers were able to talk him into surrendering. The press release said once in custody Dempsey told officers he was wanted for murdering his girlfriend in Ohio.

An Elko Daily Free Press report said Dempsey told police he was fleeing to the redwood forests in California to commit suicide.

Instead, he’ll be extradited back to Ohio later to face a murder charge.

Mann and Dempsey lived at the Paulding County home together. Police have not said if she was killed at the home, but Landers said her body was found wrapped in a blanket.

An autopsy showed Mann died of multiple gunshot wounds, Landers said.

Landers said deputies were called to the home initially for a welfare check for a woman. While they searched the property they discovered Mann’s body.

Mann had previously reported being battered by Dempsey, court records show. On Jan. 27, police were called to the couple’s Road 87 home on a domestic violence report by Mann.

Mann told police then that earlier in the day, she was bartending at the Paulding Eagles and had to ban Dempsey for being mean to other patrons. When she got home, Mann told police Dempsey grabbed her by the hair, drug her out of the house and down cement stairs and across the sidewalk into the yard, the report said.

Dempsey was arrested on a charge of domestic violence that night.

Less than three months later, Mann was found shot to death.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the sheriff’s office at (419) 399-3791.

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