ASHTABULA, Ohio — Prosecutors say an Ashtabula woman was beaten to death, and her body was hidden in her closet for days while two suspects in the case partied.
Mandy Gottschalk, 36, was reported missing by her family on Aug. 17.
Her body was found several days later in a shallow grave in the area of West 54th Street and Washington Avenue.
Kyle Starkey and Ryan McBride were both arrested after Gottschalk’s body was found.
Starkey has been indicted on two counts of murder, felonious assault, tampering with evidence, gross abuse of a corpse and domestic violence. McBride, of North Kingsville, was indicted on charges of tampering with evidence and gross abuse of a corpse.
In a press release, prosecutors allege that Starkey brutally beat Gottschalk to death in their home. McBride allegedly witnessed the beating and murder.
Prosecutors say the two men then hid Gottschalk’s body in a closet of the home “for as long as a few days while Starkey and McBride partied.” After returning to the home, the suspects are then accused of burying Gottschalk’s body in the shallow grave nearby.
The results of a preliminary autopsy indicate Gottschalk died as a result of blunt force trauma.
Further charges could be filed in the investigation.
Prosecuting Attorney Nicholas A. Iarocci said in the release:
“Starkey’s actions, if proven in a court of law, represent one of the most brutal beatings and murders that has taken place since my tenure as county prosecutor. My office, on behalf of the victim Mandy Gottschalk and her family and friends will ensure that Starkey, and McBride for that matter, are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
Gottschalk had four children. A home on McCreery Avenue in Ashtabula was recently donated to her mother, who will care for two of the children. The other two children are with another set of grandparents.