Man convicted of dismembering Youngstown woman gets 48 years to - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Man convicted of dismembering Youngstown woman gets 48 years to life

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Shannon Graves Shannon Graves
Andrew Herrmann (L) Michelle Ihllenfeld (R) Andrew Herrmann (L) Michelle Ihllenfeld (R)
Arturo Novoa (L) Katrina Layton (R) Arturo Novoa (L) Katrina Layton (R)
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

One of four suspects charged in connection with a scheme to murder and hide the body of a Youngstown woman in a freezer has been sentenced to 48 years to life in prison.

Thirty-three-year-old Arturo Novoa pleaded guilty in May to 47 charges related to the killing of 28-year-old Shannon Graves.

Novoa also pleaded guilty to abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence, engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, drug trafficking and possession of criminal tools.

Youngstown Police Detectives and the coroner say that Graves was killed at her Mahoning Avenue home when she was struck in the head several times with a heavy object.

Novoa along with several others dismembered the victim's body, put her remains in trash bags and then stored them in a freezer in Campbell.

According to investigators Novoa also burned the torso and skull of Graves by pouring sulfuric acid on them.

Novoa's co-conspirator, 36-year-old Katrina Layton pleaded guilty earlier to obstructing justice and abuse of a corpse after telling prosecutors she would testify against Novoa during his trial.

However, prosecutors have filed a motion to vacate Layton's plea and sentencing agreement, claiming that she lied to investigators. Layton has admitted to witnessing the murder, allowing the victim's body to be dismembered in her garage, and to helping move the body.

Both Layton and Novoa were indicted on charges of aggravated murder, murder, and tampering with evidence after the Graves' body was found in the basement freezer of a home in Campbell in 2017.

Members of Graves' family reported her as missing in June 2017.

Novoa and Layton were arrested in July after a Campbell couple discovered Graves' frozen remains wrapped in trash bags.

Kenneth Eshenbaugh, the man whose wife discovered the body, told police Novoa claimed in mid-July that he had no electricity at his home and as a favor was allowed to bring the freezer to the couple's basement.

They discovered the remains when the wife opened the locked freezer thinking she could find some ground meat to make spaghetti sauce.

Authorities already revealed that Layton is the one who purchased the freezer in which Graves' body was found.

A husband and wife from Youngstown also face charges in connection with Layton's death.

Investigators say 28-year-old Andrew Herrmann and 27-year-old Michelle Ihlenfeld helped Novoa mutilate and hide Graves' body, as well as burn her belongings.

Herrmann is scheduled to go on trial in July on fourteen charges including multiple charges of tampering with evidence.

No trial date is yet set for his wife on charges of intimidation, obstructing justice, and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity.

On Thursday the Mahoning County Grand Jury handed up an indictment charging the pair with aggravated drug trafficking.

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