Police: Two arraigned on murder charges in Realtor’s death have confessed

Two men charged with aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and kidnapping of a Youngstown real-estate agent are being held without bond in the Mahoning County jail.

Robert S. Brooks, 25, of Castalia Avenue in Youngstown, and Grant P. Cooper, 21, of Sulgrave Drive in Brookfield, were arraigned today by Judge Robert P. Milich of Youngstown Municipal Court in connection with the murder of Vivian Martin, 67, owner of Essence Realty.

Her body was found badly burned inside a Nelson Avenue house that was set afire.

In addition to a single count each of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and kidnapping, Brooks and Cooper were also charged with aggravated arson.

Brooks and Cooper have made video confessions to police that they killed Martin, said Police Chief Jimmy Hughes and city Prosecutor Jay Macejko.

Paul Brooks, 27, of Youngstown, Robert S. Brooks’ brother, didn’t murder Martin, Hughes said.

But the two Brooks brothers are accused of the Sept. 15 robbery of a real-estate agent at gunpoint in Boardman.

For the complete story, read Saturday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com

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