Detective Grubbs is assigned as the juvenile detective for the Westerville Division of Police. Detective Grubbs has had remarkable success solving difficult cases and holding dangerous offenders accountable. These cases usually have little to no physical evidence and no witnesses. Despite these difficulties, Detective Grubbs has been tenacious in making sure these offenders are held accountable and get results.
By showing compassion, caring, extreme and attention to detail, Detective Grubbs has been able to obtain valuable information from victims as well as confessions from suspects. In one five-week period last year, Detective Grubbs was able to get full confessions (and apology letters) from four different “hands on” offenders who had committed crimes against children between the ages of 5 to 12.
Among the notable cases was a man who was indicted and will finally stand trial for multiple rapes and molestations; the conviction of a man who used his position as an educator to manipulate a teenage girl into a sexual relationship; the conviction of a man who used his position as a social worker to molest several special needs children; and the charging of a man who used his position as a youth leader to molest several children and was indicted in another state for the same offense.
Detective Grubbs received an employee recognition in April of last year, after responding to a report of a sexual assault of a 7-year-old girl with special needs. The suspect was the victim’s 21-year old stepbrother. In the span of one day, Detective Grubbs interviewed witnesses, obtained enough probable cause to file an arrest warrant, arrest the suspect in Grove City, assist in booking, obtain a confession, and set up the victim with a forensic interview with Children’s Hospital. Detective Grubbs was the only detective who worked on this case. The father of the victim later called in to the department and left a voicemail where he thanked Detective Grubbs for being compassionate and so kind to his family. He said on the voicemail that Detective Grubbs was “born to do that job.”
In addition to his case load, Detective Grubbs is still active with the Franklin County Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. He routinely helps the task force by helping with executing search warrants and arrests. He also participated in an operation this year that resulted in the arrests of dozens of sexual predators.
In his work with the Franklin County ICAC Task Force, he has helped the task force recover 13 child victims, while helping with 49 felony arrests and 153 search warrants. His dedication was evident on July 24th while assisting the task force with a search warrant. While attempting to make contact with the suspect at his residence on W. Town Street, the suspect ran inside and caused a barricade situation to occur.
Numerous streets were closed down while SWAT responded and arrived to set up for a possible entry. Detective Grubbs was able to track down the suspect’s brother, who was in the crowd and watching the events unfold. Detective Grubbs used the brother’s cell phone to FaceTime with the suspect, who was hiding in the basement. Detective Grubbs then negotiated for the suspect’s safe exit and subsequent arrest by the Franklin County SWAT team. The incident was ended without any injuries or further problems. Detective Grubbs’ actions on this day ensured the safety of all involved.
Because of his service mentality and consistent display of tenacity and fortitude, we are pleased to recognize Det. Steve Grubbs as Officer of the Year 2020.