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Court hearing for Conneaut man accused of raping, murdering girlfriend’s daughter in 2017

Joshua Gurto (Source: Conneaut police)
Joshua Gurto (Source: Conneaut police)(Source: Conneaut Police Department)
Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 7:55 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 14, 2021 at 1:13 PM EDT
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ASHTABULA COUNTY, Ohio (WOIO) - The Conneaut man accused of raping and murdering his girlfriend’s 13-month-old daughter, appeared in Ashtabula County Court of Common Pleas Thursday.

Joshua Gurto, 41, is accused of killing Sereniti JazzLyn-Sky Blankenship-Sutley on Oct. 7, 2017 in an apartment in the 500 block of Clark Street in Conneaut.

According to police and the coroner, the toddler died of blunt force trauma.

In court Thursday, the prosecution offered Gurto a plea deal, which his attorney accepted.

Judge Marianne Sezon will now make a decision before Gurto’s scheduled Oct. 29 trial date if she will allow the plea deal.

Joshua Gurto. (Source: Conneaut Police Department)
Joshua Gurto. (Source: Conneaut Police Department)

Judge Sezon did hear testimony from several police officers in a closed door hearing Thursday.

Sereniti Jazzlyn-Sky Blankenship-Sutley
Sereniti Jazzlyn-Sky Blankenship-Sutley(WOIO (custom credit) | WOIO)

The family of Blankenship-Sutley remains under a gag order.

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