Mother arrested in connection with Oct. 2017 murder of 13-month-old Ashtabula girl

The Ashtabula County Prosecutor’s Office announced the arrest of a woman in connection to the murder of her 13-month-old daughter.

Mother arrested in connection with Oct. 2017 murder of 13-month-old Ashtabula girl
Blankenship is accused of murdering her daughter.

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The Ashtabula County Prosecutor’s Office announced the arrest of a woman in connection to the murder of her 13-month-old daughter.

Mother arrested in connection with Oct. 2017 murder of 13-month-old Ashtabula girl

Prosecutor Nicholas Iarocci says a grand jury secretly indicted Kelsie Marie Blankenship on Oct. 17 for seven charges in connection to the death of Sereniti Blankenship-Sutley.

The charges include:

  • 2 counts of murder
  • Felonious assault
  • 3 counts of endangering children
  • Domestic violence

Blankenship was arrested Friday morning, according to Iarocci.

Ashtabula prosecutors make announcement in connection with Oct. 2017 murder of 13-month-old. https://buff.ly/2EyHeNQ

Posted by Cleveland 19 News on Friday, October 19, 2018

Blankenship was booked at the Ashtabula County Jail and is expected to be arraigned on a future date.

Conneaut police started the investigation into Sereniti’s murder after responding to a home on Clark Street on Oct. 7, 2017.

The coroner said Serenity died of blunt force trauma to her head and body. There were also signs of sexual assault, the county prosecutor said.

Police initially arrested 37-year-old Joshua Gurto in connection to the girl’s death after a 3-week nationwide manhunt for the suspect.

Joshua Gurto (Source: Ashtabula County Prosecutor)
Joshua Gurto (Source: Ashtabula County Prosecutor)

Gurto, who was Blankenship’s boyfriend, faces several charges including aggravated murder, rape, and felonious assault.

The Ashtabula prosecutor is requesting the death penalty for Gurto if convicted.

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