Those were the words of Carmella Badillo, ex-girlfriend of slain mother Heather Bogle, 28, after the suspect in her killing Daniel Myers, 49, of Clyde, changed his plea to guilty Wednesday.
Myers was sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 20 years by Judge John Dewey in Sandusky County Common Pleas Court, after Myers pleaded guilty to five felonies relating to Bogle’s murder in April 2015.
The plea includes specifications that the crime was sexually motivated and that Myers would be deemed a sexually violent predator. Myers also faces a fine of up to $25,000.
Myers’ attorney, Merle Dech, and Sandusky County prosecutor Tim Braun detailed Myers’ agreement to plead guilty to all counts — in exchange for the death penalty being taken off of the table — during which Myers looked down at a piece of paper and appeared to take notes.
Dewey then informed Myers of his rights, to which he responded, “Yes,” when Dewey asked if he understood.
Sheriff Hilton’s work leads to conviction
Bogle was killed April 10, 2015. Her body was found in the trunk of her car outside an apartment complex in Clyde.
Former Sandusky County sheriff’s detective Sean O’Connell took the lead on the Bogle homicide case. During his 15-month investigation, no arrests were made. Afterward, in 2017, O’Connell was indicted on eight counts, including felonies, with most of the charges relating to his mishandling of the Bogle investigation.
O’Connell pleaded guilty to felony evidence tampering and was sentenced to two years in prison in September 2018. At the sentencing, Bogle’s sister, Jennifer Bogle, criticized O’Connell in a prepared statement read in court.
“Sean had zero intentions on actually solving this case,” Jennifer Bogle said. “He has shown absolutely no remorse for not doing his job, for the way he treated our family or for the trust lost by the Sandusky County people in their law enforcement due to his negligence.”
After current Sandusky County Sheriff Chris Hilton took office in January 2017, he restarted the investigation and zeroed in on Myers — one of Bogle’s coworker at Whirlpool in Clyde — as the only suspect.
‘You’re a murderer’
Members of Bogle’s family had the opportunity to directly address Myers in court with victim impact statements.
Badillo said after Bogle was reported missing on April 9, 2015, she and members of Bogle’s family went out to search for her.
“Heather’s mother sat patiently waiting for her daughter’s return that would never come,” Badillo said. “We sat and we waited, and we waited until we heard the tragic news from the detectives.”
She continued: “You are the monster that creeps beneath your bed. You are the person who’s hiding around the corner that everybody warns you about … You are a murderer and you are a piece of (expletive).”
Carlie Fairbanks, victim advocate for the Sandusky County prosecutor’s office, read a statement on the behalf of Bogle’s mother, Renae McLaughlin.
“At least we can go on with our broken lives knowing you’ll never be free,” Fairbanks read from McLaughlin’s statement.
Bogle’s cousin Pat Harger, told Myers he felt sorry for his family, motioning to Myers’ family in the courtroom, because they had to “carry your last name.”
“Godspeed, Heather. We did it,” Harger said. “We got you.”
After the family spoke, Dewey gave Myers the chance to make a statement of his own.
“I have nothing to say,” Myers said.
In response, Dewey said: “I thought there might be some exhibition of remorse, but I’ve seen none.”
Evidence of the crime
Braun presented evidence relating to Bogle’s killing during the hearing.
The presentation included images of Bogle’s body, at the crime scene and before an autopsy, which elicited sobs from members of her family in the court.
Braun discussed how Bogle was severely beaten and shot twice in the back from about 5 feet away. Braun also said bruising on her body suggests Bogle was handcuffed and her feet were also bound.
DNA evidence was found underneath her fingernails, and Braun said they were able to match that DNA to Myers.
During the investigation, law enforcement used Bogle’s gmail account to track her GPS location — which purportedly showed Bogle at Myers’ home after she went missing, Braun said.
Braun also mentioned several women came forward after Myers’ arrest, claiming they’d been sexually abused by him.
“Every one of them came into my office and told me, ‘but for the grace of God, I could have been Heather Bogle,’” Braun said.
Leigh Ann Sluder case
At a press conference following the hearing, Hilton said the day was significant for the county and Bogle’s family.
“Today a mother, daughter, sister and a brother and so many other family and friends who knew and loved Heather can begin to grieve,” Hilton said. “Today the person, the perpetrator, the predator who took Heather from those who loved her is going to get what he deserves.”
During the restarted investigation, Hilton said detectives received information about Leigh Ann Sluder, who shared a child with Myers. Sluder was found dead in her bedroom in 2009, and her death was ruled a suicide.
But neighbors approached Hilton when they were searching Myers’ home, which is in the same neighborhood where Sluder died, and said they never believed her death was a suicide. It was Myers who discovered Sluder’s body.
Hilton has since questioned the suicide ruling.
Braun and Hilton fielded a question about Sluder’s case.
“The case is under investigation,” Braun said. “It’s something we’ll pick up in the near future.”
Sluder’s sister, Loriann Sluder Haley, said she was contacted by the Sandusky County prosecutor’s office about the hearing Wednesday.
Harger, Bogle’s cousin quoted earlier, also referenced the death of Sluder in 2009.
“If (police) find out, then God’s will is coming for that one,” Harger said.