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Husband of slain Brown County mom no longer a person of interest in case, detectives say

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GEORGETOWN, Ohio – The husband of a 22-year-old pregnant mother found shot to death in Brown County last month has been eliminated as a person of interest in the case after taking a lie detector test, deputies said Wednesday.

Detectives said Shane Stykes, 37, is no longer under investigation as a possible suspect in the shooting of Brittany Stykes, who was found dead in her car along Route 68 in Brown County on August 28.

"Everybody has questions for me. I don't have the answers," Shane Stykes told 9 On Your Side Thursday morning. "Even though they ruled me out, they're still keeping me in the dark."

Shane Stykes told 9 On Your Side last week that he was scheduled to take a voluntary lie detector test, but did not give a date. Detectives later announced both Stykes and another person of interest were "interviewed by detectives trained to do scientific interviews."

Stykes confirmed that he took a polygraph.

Stykes said he is happy to be exonerated by police, so that "now they can really focus on the investigation...The Sheriff's Office is doing the best they can. I don't doubt that."

Deputies said Shane Stykes and the other former person of interest who was not named had alibis.

"The results indicate that (Shane Stykes) and another individual interviewed have no involvement in the offense. The investigation continues, and additional persons of interest are being interviewed," investigators said in a release.

Shane Stykes called Cincinnati radio station WEBN last Friday morning and spoke with host Kidd Chris to reach out for help in the case

“My wife and I are big fans of the show,” Stykes said, audibly holding back tears. “I’m calling for your help. Last Wednesday, my wife and unborn child were murdered on Route 68 in Brown County.”

Brittany Stykes, of Ripley, was found dead in her husband’s Jeep. A preliminary report from the county coroner states at least five shots were fired and two struck her. She was 17 weeks pregnant when she was killed.

Brittany Stykes’ 14-month-old daughter Aubree was also in the car during the shooting and was injured.

“I’m still in shock about this,” Shane Stykes told Chris. “I put my wife in the ground on Wednesday and I’ve been living with my daughter in the hospital ever since. I don’t know if I can go home. I have no idea what’s gonna’ happen here.”

Shane Stykes said cases similar to the death of his wife are “unheard of” in his community and that he lives in Ripley to stay away from crime.

“I don’t want to be around the drug scene,” he said. “All my neighbors are all very friendly. We’re all very close. That’s why I don’t get this."

During a press conference last Thursday, Brown County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy John Schadle said investigators have video of Brittany Stykes driving at 7:30 the night she was killed. But he wouldn't say where that video was shot.

Schadle also added that detectives have a witness report, but so far they have only been able to narrow down the window of the shooting to 35 minutes, from 7:30 to 8:05 p.m.

Shane Stykes said he doesn’t believe the shooting was random.

“My vehicle that my wife was shot in is a pretty unique vehicle,” Shane Stykes said to Chris. “And most everybody in my county knows that vehicle and that’s why…. I don’t know.”

Chris interrupted Stykes and asked, “Are you saying this was supposed to be a hit on you?”

Stykes responded, “That I don’t know. I don’t have anything that I’ve ever done in my past that would provoke something like that.”

Stykes said he builds control panels for conveyer systems for a living, and is not a gambler, a drug user or someone who drinks a lot.

He said his family is very tight-knit and he is close with Brittany’s parents.

“We have no idea what this is about,” he told Chris. “We’re family people, man. There’s no bar scenes. There’s no shady people in our life. There’s no nothing like that.”

Stykes said he called the station so that he could solicit help to find his wife’s killer.

He said he’s given detectives names that he thinks could “be suspect,” but with investigators at a standstill with leads, he has reached a point of frustration.

“Obviously, you’re a popular guy,” Shane Stykes told Chris. “I’m asking for any kind of help that you can offer. I don’t like asking people for help. You have the power of the media on your side and information. I’m just hoping somebody knows something. I’m begging anybody…I just want to find who did this to my family.”

Stykes said his daughter Aubree, who is being treated at Cincinnati Children's Hospital, is “doing amazing.”

He believes she will be released "fairly soon" but didn't want to give a date.

He added that he doesn’t understand who would shoot at a child and that he hopes by reaching out to the radio station, tips to solve this crime will come in.

“We’re obviously dealing with a coward,” Stykes said. “Whoever did this is a coward. I don‘t know if cowards are going to expose themselves.”

To listen to the whole interview with Kidd Chris, click here: http://bit.ly/155Bgdi

Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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