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Arrest made in slayings; suspect was boyfriend of dead couple's daughter

TNS Regional News • Apr 5, 2013 at 5:07 PM

Authorities said Thursday afternoon that Shawn E. Ford Jr., 18, has been charged in the bludgeoning murders of a prominent couple at their Portage Lakes area home Tuesday.

Ford has been identified as the boyfriend of the slain couple’s daughter, who remains hospitalized following an assault on her in March.

Police announced the arrest at a news conference at City Hall, when New Franklin police, investigators from the Akron Police Department and New Franklin city officials gave details of their investigation.

A Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office report, which was released hours earlier, stated that a sledge hammer was found by investigators on the bed in the couple’s bedroom next to Jeffrey Schobert’s body.

Schobert, 56, was a prominent attorney, and his wife, Margaret J. “Peg” Schobert, 59, was an active volunteer for various Summit County groups.

A construction worker found the bodies about 2:20 p.m. Tuesday and called 911.

The records show that a medical examiner’s investigator, Mike Halas, arrived at the Schobert residence on Rex Lake Drive in New Franklin at 5:09 p.m. and reported that both bodies were in the master bedroom.

Halas reported that Jeffrey Schobert was dressed in black boxer shorts. He had a “large laceration” in the center of the forehead.

Peg Schobert’s body was on the bedroom floor between the bed and a dresser. She was fully clothed, wearing a black coat, brown shirt, blue jeans and brown boots, the report said. She had suffered lacerations to the face, the area of the right eye and the forehead.

Before the slayings, according to the agency’s records, Peg Schobert spent all of Monday night at Akron Children’s Hospital. Her 18-year-old daughter, Chelsea Schobert, was recovering there from multiple injuries suffered in a March 23 attack on Andrus Street in Akron.

Peg Schobert arrived home at 6:05 a.m. Tuesday, and a text message was sent from her cell phone “re/boyfriend,” the records stated.

At 8 a.m., workers arrived at the Schobert residence to work on the remodeling job, “unaware of the decedents in the residence.”

At 10:20 a.m., Peg Schobert’s cell “pinged” a location in Akron, near Hill street. There were no additional details about that call in the agency’s report.

Halas, the investigator at the scene of the slayings, reported that both bodies were “cool to touch” — an indication the Schoberts had been dead for several hours before the official pronouncement of death was made at 2:39 p.m. Tuesday.

Pat Gillespie, a medical examiner’s spokesman, confirmed that the details in the agency’s records were under investigation as bludgeoning deaths.

Construction workers had been remodeling a portion of the Schobert home, which provides a sprawling, scenic view of the lake to the west. One of the workers discovered the bodies.

Ford is being held in Portage County Jail on a charge of obstruction of justice. His bond was set at 10 percent of $350,000.


By Ed Meyer - Akron Beacon Journal (MCT)

©2013 the Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio)

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