Novoa sentenced to 48 years in prison in dismemberment death

YOUNGSTOWN — Arturo Novoa, who pleaded guilty May 30 to killing his girlfriend, dismembering her and sticking parts of a body in a freezer was sentenced today to a total of 48 years in prison in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.

Before sentencing, prosecutors showed Judge Anthony Donofrio pictures of Shannon Graves’ remains and other photos from the investigation. Family and friends sobbed each time one of those pictures was used.

Judge Donofrio handed down the sentence to Novoa, 33, on a murder charge in the February 2017 death of Graves in her Mahoning Avenue apartment, as well as six counts of abuse of a corpse, 24 counts of tampering with evidence, three counts of possession of criminal tools, three counts of illegal use of food stamps, grand theft of a motor vehicle, four counts of trafficking in drugs and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity.

Prosecutors believe Novoa killed Graves by hitting her in the head with a heavy object. He then hid her body, dismembered it, dissolved parts of it in acid and stuffed it in a freezer, where it was found July 29, 2017, in a Campbell home by a friend of Novoa’s who went to the freezer to get some beef for dinner.

Two other people are expected to go on trial later for their roles in the dismemberment and death of Graves and prosecutors are also looking to vacate a guilty plea for a third defendant because they say she was untruthful when she made a statement and that she also kept in contact with Novoa while he was in jail despite an order to not contact anyone in the case.

For the complete story, read Saturday's Vindicator and

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