Brian Golsby Convicted Of Killing Reagan Tokes, Now Faces Death Penalty

Mar 14, 2018

The man now convicted of kidnapping, raping and murdering Ohio State University student Reagan Tokes last February sat silently in court as the judge read the jury's verdict: Guilty on all counts, including aggravated murder.

After Wednesday's conviction, Brian Golsby now heads to sentencing, where Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien says prosecutors will pursue the death penalty.

The verdict came on what would have been Tokes’ 23rd birthday.

Golsby, 30, was on GPS monitoring after serving a prison term for attempted rape when police say he spotted Tokes as she was leaving the Bodega Café in the Short North following a work shift. Prosecutors say he forced Tokes into her car at gunpoint, made her withdraw money from an ATM machine, and raped her before fatally shooting her and dumping her body in Scioto Grove Metro Park in Grove City.

Investigators say they were able to link Golsby to the crime using DNA found on cigarette butts inside Tokes’ car. Prosecutors say data from Golsby’s GPS device also placed him at the crime scene around the time of Tokes’ death.

Tokes’ death led her parents to work with lawmakers on what came to be known as the "Reagan Tokes Act." The act, which is actually a collection of several bills, would make several changes to Ohio law, including requiring people convicted of first- and second-degree felonies to be given indeterminate sentences, which do not have a definite end date and give prison officials more leniency in keeping inmates behind bars.

The act would also tighten GPS monitoring of newly-released inmates by placing restrictions on where they can and can’t go to help police more-closely track their whereabouts. Under current law, police usually retroactively review GPS data to see where a person traveled.

The sponsor of one bill says it could go to a vote in the Senate as early as next week.