A 28-year-old Ohio woman vanished without a trace earlier this year. Now the discovery of her body is prompting a new investigation into her former boyfriend and his new lover.
According to WKBN in Youngstown, Ohio, Shannon Graves went missing in mid-February and was added to the Ohio attorney general’s missing persons website this month.Screenshot/Facebook
Graves was living with her boyfriend, 31-year-old Arturo Novoa, in Youngstown at the time of her disappearance. But just two weeks after she vanished, Novoa seemed to move on.
His new girlfriend, 34-year-old Katrina Layton, moved into the residence — and she took full advantage of the fact that Graves didn’t appear to be coming back.
According to People magazine, Layton “took over” Graves’s place and “basically, assumed her life and her belongings.”
She started using the missing woman’s credit cards, phone, and car. She even started to care for her dog. Youngstown Prosecutor Dana Lantz told People:
“Basically, Miss Layton moved in with Mr. Novoa and started living [Graves’] life. She didn’t hold herself out to be Shannon, but she just lived her life: using her phone, caring for her dog.”
But her stint living Graves’s life would soon come to an end.
On July 24, Layton and Novoa said they lost power at their residence, and moved a large, padlocked freezer that they kept in their garage to a friend’s home.
But according to CBS News, the friend and his wife grew suspicious of the locked freezer and decided to check inside over the weekend. That’s when they made a horrifying discovery.
The couple found a corpse, later identified as Graves, inside Novoa’s freezer. They immediately contacted authorities.
Layton and Novoa were arrested for abuse of a corpse on Sunday. Novoa was also charged with obstruction of justice. Youngstown Police Lt. Doug Bobovnik said they haven’t been charged with murder:
“No one was charged with a murder because we have no idea what the cause of death was.”
Both Layton and Novoa are currently being held on $1 million bail, according to People.
It’s still unclear how the 28-year-old died.