Man arrested in Strongsville teacher's murder says he acted in self-defense

Strongsville murder suspect claims self-defense
Updated: Nov. 3, 2017 at 2:38 PM EDT
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STRONGSVILLE, OH (WOIO) - The man accused of killing his future mother-in-law says there was a struggle and he acted in self-defense.

Melinda Pleskovic, 49, was found shot and stabbed to death on Oct. 23. Her future son-in-law, Jeffrey Scullin, Jr. was arrested a week later.

Scullin told detectives there was an argument and he grabbed a gun nearby in self-defense. There has been no explanation for the multiple stab wounds Pleskovic also suffered.

Suspect's DNA found on "large tactical knife"

Court documents reveal DNA from both Pleskovic and Scullin was found on a knife inside a truck in the driveway of the Pleskovic's home. A gun was found in a car on Fair Street in Strongsville. That is where Scullin's father, a former Cleveland police officer lives.

There is an interesting history between Scullin and his father.

A police report from 2013 shows a 911 call where Scullin's father suffered a gunshot wound to the head. Scullin, Jr. is quoted in the incident report, saying he did not know how the injury occurred.

Friday, Scullin, Jr. was in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court to face charges including aggravated murder, felonious assault, and tampering with evidence.

Judge Michael Donnelly set Scullin's bond at $1 million.

Scullin, 20, was arrested by Strongsville police on Tuesday.

He was living with his fiance's parents at their Strongsville home on Blazing Star Drive.

The 6th-grade teacher's body was found just days before Scullin and her daughter were supposed to be married. Scullin also served as a pallbearer at her funeral.

Both Scullin and Pleskovic's husband called 911.

Scullin told the 911 dispatcher, "she has blood all around her."


Listen to Scullin's 911 call

He told the dispatcher that he left the house as soon as he realized something was wrong, taking his young daughter and the Pleskovic's son outside.

Scullin's case is being sent to a Cuyahoga County grand jury. His next court appearance is scheduled for Nov. 13.

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