2nd victim identified in Ashland murders

ASHLAND - Prosecutor Chris Tunnell confirmed the second body from the Covert Court house is that of missing Ashland woman Elizabeth Griffith

Griffith, 29, had been reported missing since she hadn't been seen since Aug. 16 near Walmart.

Tunnell identified Griffith during a video statement released via Twitter, following the bond hearing for murder suspect Shawn M. Grate

Grate's bond was set a $1 million Friday in Ashland Common Pleas Court.

Two murder charges and a charge of kidnapping were filed Thursday against Shawn Grate, 40, in connection with an abduction and two bodies found earlier this week in a Covert Court abandoned house.

Grate, who is being held in the Ashland County Jail.

Judge Ron Forsthoefel, via video conferencing, set a bond of $1 million for Grate, and ordered if he posted bond, he could have no contact with the kidnapping victim, a 9 p.m.-7a.m curfew and wear electronic monitoring.

"No, it sounds fair," Grate said, when asked by the judge if he had any questions about the condition of the bond.

Forsthoefel appointed Mansfield defense attorney Rolf Whitney, as court-appointed counsel.

A competency hearing was set for 7:45 a.m. Monday. The judge said it has not been determined whether it would be in the courtroom or via video.

The bond hearing originally was scheduled Thursday at 5:15 p.m., but was postponed at the request of the state.

Wednesday, the Ashland County coroner identified one of the bodies recovered at 363 Covert Court as being Stacey Stanley, the Greenwich woman who had been missing since last week.

After being apprehended by Ashland police, Grate led authorities to Richland County, where they found the body of a third woman on Park Avenue East. Her body has not yet been publicly identified.

Check back for more updates.


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