Detective: Murder defendant changed her story 3 times

Tuesday prosecutors played a taped recording of 21-year-old Tova Wallace-Lee being questioned by police within two hours after a fight in which 19-year-old Tre’Ana Larchelle Tarver had died. In the tape, played in court, Wallace-Lee says she stabbed Tarver during a fight.

Wallace-Lee is charged with murder and is facing an indefinite sentence of 15 years to life if convicted. Tarver died Nov. 3, 2018 after being stabbed during a fight that happened in the backyard of her home in the 200 block of East Church Street.

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Xenia Detective Matt Miller testified Tuesday that social media communications between Wallace-Lee and Tarver indicated they planned to meet and fight at Wallace-Lee’s home that night. The two had been arguing over a man.

Miller testified Wallace-Lee initially said she blacked out and couldn’t remember what happened. Miller said the defendant then gave two versions of what happened. Wallace-Lee said she stabbed the victim while they were on the ground and she was being jumped by two of the victim’s friends, then changed the story to say she stabbed the victim while they were still standing prior to Tarver’s two friends intervening.

In both recountings, Miller said Wallace-Lee reported that Tarver swung at her first.

“I don’t know anything, I just, I stabbed her,” Wallace-Lee tells the detective in the recorded interview.

During cross examination, Miller told Wallace-Lee’s attorney Kirsten Knight that the defendant was cooperative and allowed the detective to look at phone messages between herself and the victim. Miller agreed with Knight’s assertion that Wallace-Lee gave the two versions of what happened within about two minutes during the interview.

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“Is it normal for people you are interviewing to be a little bit scattered with their information?” Knight asked the detective, to which Miller replied, “It happens from time to time.”

Xenia Detective David Wilson also testified Tuesday, telling the court the investigation involved acquiring communications and posts from Facebook.

Prosecutors are expected to conclude presenting their evidence in the case Wednesday, officials said.


Tova Wallace-Lee

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