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Second suspect in body dumping case pleads guilty

| January 4, 2023
39-year-old Daniel Fitzgerald is awaiting sentencing after admitting to abusing the corpse of Amber Sherell, failing to report her death, and tampering with evidence. (WJER Radio)

NEW PHILADELPHIA (WJER) (Jan. 4, 2023) – Tuscarawas County Common Pleas Court jurors won’t be hearing the case against the man who helped his girlfriend dump a Dover woman’s body along the side of a road days after her death from a drug overdose.

39-year-old Daniel Fitzgerald had his trial called off after admitting in court to abusing Amber Sherell’s corpse, failing to report her death, and tampering with evidence. He was facing a second tampering charge that Judge Michael Ernest dismissed at the request of Assistant County Prosecutor Scott Deedrick.

“I believe it’s an allied offense for which he couldn’t be sentenced separately in any event. It really is similar conduct.”

Attorney Richard Drake has been representing Fitzgerald since he and his previous public defender mutually agreed to part ways. He says Fitzgerald didn’t know Sherell and wasn’t around when she died but agreed to help move her because the girlfriend’s kids were home at the time.

“He did move the body to the garage. She was rather insistent that the plan was to let [Sherell’s] family know what had happened but not her get in any trouble, so she wanted the body taken to a place she knew and to put the body there at night so she wouldn’t be caught but the next morning when the sun came up, the body would be discovered immediately.” 

A passerby found Sherell’s body along White Bridge Road on the morning of October 26, 2021. The girlfriend, 26-year-old Cekoyia Reichers, is serving a three-year prison term after pleading guilty to the charges against her. Fitzgerald remains in the county jail and will return to court to learn his fate on February 24th.   

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