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Rittman woman found guilty of aggravated murder

Erica Stefanko was found guilty of two counts of special felonies charges.
Credit: Summit County Sheriff’s Office

SUMMIT COUNTY, Ohio — A Summit County jury has found a Rittman woman guilty in connection with a 2012 murder.

Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh announced today that Erica Stefanko, 37, was found guilty of one count of aggravated murder and one count of murder - both special felonies. 

According to official reports, on June 20, 2012, Stefanko lured the victim, Ashley Biggs, 25, to the empty parking lot of New Franklin business by ordering a pizza, which Biggs delivered. Upon delivering the pizza, Chad Cobb, with whom the victim shared a 7-year-old daughter at the time, tased Biggs then beat and strangled her.

Stefanko, who was married to Cobb at the time, then followed Cobb as he took the victim's body to an empty field in Chippewa Township in Wayne County and then drove Cobb home where he washed off evidence of the crime. 

At the time of the murder, Cobb and Biggs were going through a very contentious custody battle over their daughter.

"Today, more than 8 years after she was brutally murdered, justice has come for Ashley Biggs," Prosecutor Walsh announced. "Thank you to the jurors who, under these unusual and extreme circumstances, thoroughly reviewed the evidence and determined Erica Stefanko was responsible for Ashley's death. Thank you as well to the New Franklin Police Department who continued to investigate this crime. My office will fight for justice, no matter how long it takes."

Cobb previously pled guilty in 2013 to a number of 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th degree felonies, including aggravated murder, felonious assault and tampering with evidence. He is serving a life sentence without eligibility for parole.

Stefanko is scheduled for hearing on January 11, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. with Summit County Common Pleas Court Judge Amy Corrigall Jones.