Skip to content

Joel Drain Ohio Death Row

joel drain

Joel Drain would be sentenced to death by the State of Ohio for a prison murder. According to court documents Joel Drain would wake up and decided to kill someone. Joel Drain would invite Christopher Richardson to his cell and would beat the man to death with a fan motor. Joel Drain would be convicted and sentenced to death

Ohio Death Row Inmate List

Joel Drain 2021 Information

Number A726985

DOB 09/18/1981

Gender Male Race White

Admission Date 07/12/2016

Institution Ohio State Penitentiary


Joel Drain More News

Joel Drain walked out of his cell and downstairs in the Warren Correctional Institution. He covered the blood on his shirt by putting on a green hoodie. Drain, 38, greeted a friend and told him he had just smoked synthetic marijuana, even though he had not.

Drain later told investigators he said this because he looked crazy – and he had just killed someone. As he walked by other inmates in his unit, an officer noticed blood on the stairs. This officer followed the blood upstairs, where he found a bloody footprint. 

He followed the blood to Drain’s cell, number 215, and called for backup when he got there. Another officer arrived and unlocked the door, where a window had been covered to block the view of what was inside. 

Once opened, officers saw a room in disarray. They saw an inmate with a bloody sheet covering his face. They saw part of a broken fan, cable wire from a TV and pencils on the bed. When the sheet was removed, they would discover one pencil had been jammed into the inmate’s eye.

As the officers called for more backup, Drain got on his knees downstairs and put his hands in the air.

When he woke up that morning, in April of 2019, Drain said he planned to kill someone else. When he spoke with state investigators hours later, in an interview that would drag past midnight, he forgot the man’s name who he killed.

There was another inmate who lived in his unit. This inmate was a child molester, Drain said in a recorded interview played in court on Monday. And that’s who he woke up planning to kill, he said. 

Drain had been using nail clippers to fashion a knife out of his cell window, but it was taking too long.

“I was getting antsy,” he told investigators. 

He had invited Christopher Richardson into his cell to smoke synthetic marijuana. Richardson, 29, was serving four years for aggravated arson. The two knew each other, but not well. Drain had no problems with him and said he was “weirdly friendly.”

When Richardson got to the cell, Drain’s adrenaline was pumping. He had disassembled a fan and removed the heavy motor from it. He kept it in his hoodie. 

“I started thinking he’d be an easy kill,” Drain told investigators about Richardson. “I could still carry out my plan. I could kill him and the other guy.”

So he did. 

Drain hit Richardson in the head with the fan motor so many times it broke. Then, he used his hands to beat Richardson and grabbed a pencil, slamming it into his eye. He kicked it into Richardson’s head, and then grabbed a cable cord and wrapped it around the man’s neck.

He lost track of how many times he hit Richardson.

Drain could no longer kill the person he woke up thinking about, because he had used all his weapons. He was infuriated, and he stomped on Richardson’s throat. 

As these details were revealed Monday, heavy rain could be heard coming down outside the Warren County Court of Common Pleas. The rain was loud, but not as loud as the tears of Richardson’s mother.

A bailiff grabbed a box of tissues and placed it on the railing near the woman, who struggled when pictures of the bloody cell were displayed on a television screen. Eventually, the victim’s mother was escorted out of the courtroom by someone from the prosecutor’s office. She returned after lunch.

Drain was charged with aggravated murder and two other felonies. On Monday, a three-judge panel found Drain guilty of all charges and sentenced him to death. It took them about an hour to reach their decision. 

Drain sat in his chair in a beige dress shirt, buttoned all the way up to his neck. Some family behind him cried; he did not.

The decision will automatically be appealed to the Ohio Supreme Court. 

Drain, of Findlay, Ohio, had previously been convicted of murder in 2016 and was serving a possible life sentence. He’d been transferred to the Warren County prison a few weeks before the 2019 homicide because he cut his wrist. 

Drain’s attorneys presented little evidence in his defense. He waived his right to a jury trial and pleaded no-contest. He told the court he didn’t want to blame his actions on a dysfunctional childhood or other trauma in his life. 

He said his attorneys tried to get his 14-year-old daughter to testify, but he wouldn’t allow it

“My daughter has nothing to do with my criminal behavior,” he said. “I refuse to let her be used as a human shield.” 

Drain said he was locked in a prison cell when he was 13 and told investigators he’d been in and out of prison most of his life. 

“My death sentence was handed down long ago,” he said. 

In a statement before the judges began deliberating, Drain accepted responsibility for his actions but did not apologize. He said he didn’t want to be fake. 

“The killer in me is the same one inside of you,” Drain told the judges. “And if there is a hell, I’ll see you there.”

author avatar

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *