Joe Shouse/Paulding County Progress
Joe Shouse/Paulding County Progress

BREAKING NEWS: On Friday afternoon, Steven Noffsinger was found not guilty of murder after five hours of jury deliberation.

By JOE SHOUSE

Progress Staff Writer


PAULDING – After five hours of deliberation, the jurors in the Steven Noffsinger aggravated murder case returned a not guilty verdict in Paulding County Common Pleas Court.

Noffsinger, 59, from Defiance was charged with with the 1981 death of his ex-wife, Alma Noffsinger.

The case was featured on the TNT program “Cold Justice” and had drawn a growing interest from the area.

No emotion was expressed as Judge Tiffany Beckman read the not guilty verdict for the two charges; aggravated murder and murder. Once the lawyers agreed not to poll the jurors, they were dismissed from the court room.

The verdict ended a five-day trial.

Family and friends numbering nearly 30 people filled the gallery and once Beckman officially released Noffsinger he shook hand with his team of lawyers, William Kluge and Robert Grzybowski.

Noffsinger then turned around where he was greeted by his son, Ryan, with an embrace. With tears of relief and he then shared a moment with his two sisters who had been in the courtroom each day of the hearings.

Several former co-workers from Dinner Bell, where Steve had worked, also showed support with their attendance throughout the week, and they, too, spoke briefly to him before leaving the courtroom.

Late Thursday evening, the State completed its presentation of evidence and 15 witnesses. With the State’s portion completed, it was the defense who had their opportunity to call witnesses on Friday morning.

Kluge called only four witnesses to the stand. Noffsinger did not testify on his own behalf.