Athens Review, Athens, Texas

January 12, 2013

Man’s run ends

Fugitive nabbed by sheriff’s office

Rich Flowers
The Athens Review

ATHENS — The Henderson County Sheriff’s Office arrested a man Thursday night in connection with a robbery-kidnapping in Log Cabin.

The suspect was also wanted for bond forfeiture stemming from a 2009 Van Zandt County murder.

Wilhelm Edgar Ostrom, 40, of Hawkins remained in the Henderson County Jail Friday afternoon awaiting arraignment on multiple Henderson County charges, including aggravated kidnapping, aggravated robbery, unlawful carrying of a weapon and failure to identify as a fugitive from justice.

HCSO reports state Deputy Brad Beddingfield saw Ostrom at about 10 p.m. Thursday walking on State Highway 198 between Caney City and Payne Springs. The deputy, thinking it was a bit unusual to see someone walking alone at night on a cold evening, stopped to talk to the man.

Beddingfield asked Ostrom for identification, but was given false information. The deputy then found that the man was carrying a large knife with a built-in set of brass knuckles in the handle — which is prohibited under state law.

HCSO reports state that while Beddingfield was talking with Ostrom, the sheriff’s office received a call from a man in Log Cabin who said he had been kidnapped and robbed. The caller’s description of the offender matched Ostrom.

According to reports, the victim told dispatch he had been driving in Log Cabin and saw a man walking near the street. The driver pulled over and was going to offer a ride, but realized he did not know the person walking.

The stranger got in and at knifepoint told the driver to take him to the Purtis Creek area on Farm-to-Market Road 316.

After a few minutes, the offender told the driver that he needed to use the phone. The driver gave him his cell phone, and the man got out of the car  to get a better signal. That gave the driver a chance to speed away.

The driver then called HCSO and described the assailant’s knife, which matched the one Ostrom was carrying when Beddingfield stopped him. Ostrom was charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated robbery in connection with the Log Cabin incident.

Ostrom’s Van Zandt County charges date back to October 2009, when he was arrested for the fatal stabbing of 30-year-old Jonathan Shipman following an argument. In that case, authorities working a traffic accident on Van Zandt County Road 4907 found a man and woman with knife wounds.

Shipman, a Tyler resident, was taken to East Texas Medical Center in Tyler where he later died with multiple stab wounds. Shelly Rackow, of Bullard, was cut across the throat but survived.  

Authorities arrested Ostrom at a residence later that night.

He was subsequently indicted by a Van Zandt County grand jury and later released on bond.