Group creates Website to 'Free Ryan Widmer'

By Dan Wells - bio | email

LEBANON, OH (FOX19) - Even though a 12-member jury of his peers deliberated for more than 22 hours and returned a guilty verdict, one local group still believes Ryan Widmer is innocent.

They say this case was a horrible example of a local justice system that sent a free man to jail.

It was a case that captivated the Tri-state - a Hamilton Township man charged with killing his newlywed wife by drowning her in the couple's bathtub.

"It isn't a trial that I followed really in-depth but it was dinner conversation with my wife. We would talk about it in the mornings and the night that the verdict came out I was blown away," said Mike Mayleben, the creator of

Mayleben developed the Web site right after the verdict due to a massive response on Facebook and on local media Web sites, including, where people following the case said they felt the coviction was a mistake.

"The whole point of this site is to give the local community a place that they can go and express their feelings," said Mayleben.

It's a platform where people certainly went.

"We've had over 1,600 absolute unique visitors since Friday morning, and 2,596 visits over and almost 14,000 page views," said Mayleben. "I think that I have seen five people support the decision that was made."

Mayleben sais he does not know Ryan Widmer or his family.

"I've got some friends that I went to school with that know him, work with him, U'm just doing that as a citizen that is concerned and using my resources to do so," said Mayleben.

Warren County Prosecutor Rachel Hutzel gave a statement on behalf of Sarah Widmer's family, saying they have been devastated by her loss and they know nothing they can say will bring her back.