Civil suit related to Mills case dismissed

By Renee Brown, The Times-Reporter
Posted 7/26/2008

Tuscarawas County Common Pleas Court Judge Elizabeth Lehigh Thomakos has dismissed a civil lawsuit that arose out of the investigation into the May 2006 death of 2-year-old Noah A. Shoup of New Philadelphia.

Attorneys on behalf of the Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. filed the civil suit last year, shortly after Marsha J. Mills, 57, of Dover was found guilty of murder, felonious assault and child endangering in Shoup’s death.

Shoup was injured at Mills’ former home on Park Ave. NW, New Philadelphia, and the home was covered by a Nationwide homeowner’s policy. The suit requested Thomakos find that Nationwide would not have to pay any damages relating to the incident.

Thomakos dismissed the lawsuit at the request of Mills’ attorneys, who argued that no grounds for a decision exist. No one has sued Mills and no claims have been made to the insurance company.

The insurance company maintained no insurance coverage existed on May 10, 2006, because intentional acts of harm negate coverage and because home care services were not listed on the policy declarations.

Shoup’s parents, Douglas and Kristen Shoup, were listed as defendants in the lawsuit along with Mills.

Mills was convicted by a jury in June 2007 of seriously injuring the boy while she baby-sat him on May 10, 2006. He died the next day.

She is serving a life sentence in the Ohio Reformatory for Women at Marysville and is appealing her conviction and sentence. She maintains the boy fell off her back porch steps.