Ohio man pleads guilty to killing missing fiancée 13 years ago and burying her in Indiana

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun10,2024

HAMILTON, Ohio (TCD) — A 35-year-old man pleaded guilty last week to killing his fiancée 13 years ago and hiding her body in the woods, where it was found two years later.

Butler County court records show John Carter entered the plea on June 7 for involuntary manslaughter, and in exchange, prosecutors dropped two counts of murder for the death of 21-year-old Katelyn Markham. Carter faces a maximum term of three years in prison.

According to the Hamilton Journal-News, Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said after the court hearing, “This brings absolute undeniable finality to the question of who is responsible and accountable for the disappearance and death of Katelyn Markham.”

Carter has been out on bond since his arrest last year.

Markham was last seen on the evening of Aug. 13, 2011, just days before her 22nd birthday. Carter reported her missing to Fairfield Police the next day. Court records show he told police he went to her home that day to check in on her because she wasn’t answering her phone, and when he got there, her wallet and purse were in her room even though she was nowhere to be found.

Police reportedly asked Carter about red marks on his neck, but he said they were from his electric razor.

Carter and Markham, a student at the Art Institute of Ohio, Cincinnati, was two weeks from graduating and planned to move to Colorado after she finished school.

Markham’s phone stopped working on Aug. 14, 2011.

Markham’s body was found nearly two years later on April 7, 2013, in a wooded area of Cedar Grove, Indiana, about 35 minutes from their home in Ohio.

According to the court documents, Markham’s remains were “wrapped in several sheets of black or dark-colored plastic. The skull was wrapped separately in a discolored plastic shopping bag.”

The Hamilton County Coroner’s Office conducted an autopsy and determined she died by homicide but could not list a cause of death due to the level of decomposition.

The Hamilton Journal-News reports detectives found sharp force injuries on Markham’s wrist, including a cut so deep it removed part of her bone. Prosecutors wrote in court documents that Carter “by physical violence and by force did cause the death of Katelyn Markham.”

Markham’s case went cold, but investigators reopened it in 2022.

Markham’s father told the Hamilton Journal-News, “I have so much to say. Hardly feels like justice of Katelyn. But I understand and support the Butler County prosecutors.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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