Naomi Arnette - Missiing 5/21/07 Illinois (BODY FOUND - TES)

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MuffyBee:
Thank you Rob for explaining these things to us.  From what I've read on your site and some other areas, it  did indeed look like Robert Arnette thought he could get away with Naomi's murder.  I'm grateful Grande and others stayed on it and even if the LE didn't credit them, they are  heroes to me.   Sharp eyes, notice for detail.  Noting  when something doesn't quite sound right and most important of all, following up.  Justice for the victims.  The same with TES and the searchers.  They are heroes.  It doesn't appear they were given much credit by LE for their work and findings in Naomi's case either.  I appreciate the searchers and all that volunteered, whether it was supporting searchers, actual searching on foot, horseback or ATV's, manning the booth.  Being there and caring. Well done.  All of these are the people I would want helping me if it were one of my loved one's missing, that's for sure.

MuffyBee:
Doctor: Suspect is fit for trial in slaying of Naomi Arnette
By Mary Schenk
Saturday, August 2, 2008
URBANA A former Champaign man accused of murdering his estranged wife and hiding her body is set to stand trial Aug. 18.

Lawyers in Robert Arnette's case Friday accepted the findings of Champaign psychiatrist Lawrence Jeckel that Arnette is fit to stand trial for the murder of Naomi Arnette, who was 36 at the time she went missing.
http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/08/02/doctor_suspect_is_fit_for_trial_in_slaying_of_naomi_arnette

Jury selection complete, Arnette murder trial to begin
By The News-Gazette
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
URBANA A jury will begin hearing evidence Wednesday in the trial of a Champaign man accused of the murder of his wife.

The jury selection, which began Monday, concluded Tuesday afternoon.
http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/08/19/jury_selection_complete_arnette_murder_trial_to_begin

Niece: Arnette admitted causing estranged wife's death
By Steve Bauer
Thursday, August 21, 2008
URBANA Robert Arnette admitted he accidentally caused the death of his estranged wife, a niece testified at his trial in Urbana Wednesday.

Arnette, 39, is accused of murder and concealment of death of his estranged wife, Naomi, 37, who was reported missing family on May 21, 2007.
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Roseanna Deedrick, 18, a daughter of one of Arnette's sisters, testified she confronted her uncle and asked him about the death of Mrs. Arnette.

Assistant State's Attorney Duke Harris asked Deedrick, "Did he tell you he killed her?"

Deedrick said, "Yes, out of frustration."
The niece said she asked her uncle if he strangled or choked Mrs. Arnette. Deedrick testified Arnette answered "yes," but she does not know which of the two he meant.


Under cross examination by Assistant Public Defender Emily Monroe, who is representing Arnette, Deedrick said her uncle also said, "It was an accident and I'm sorry."

Testimony in the trial began Wednesday, following two days of jury selection. It is expected to go into next week.

Champaign County Sheriff's Investigator Shane Cook testified Wednesday about a jailhouse interview he did Oct. 2, 2007, with Arnette after skeletal remains found Sept. 30, 2007, in a wooded area near Sadorus were confirmed by dental records to be those of Mrs. Arnette.
A videorecording of the interview played for the jury showed Arnette first gave Cook a written statement then answered questions by the investigator, saying he discovered Mrs. Arnette's body hanging by an orange extension cord over a beam in her basement. Arnette also said he found a suicide note, which he said he destroyed by burning and flushing it down a toilet at the house.

Arnette said he made the discovery May 21, when he went to their former mutual house in Sadorus to pick up some of his belongings. He said he took down her body, put it in a large plastic tub or "tote," and took it in his truck to the wooded area where it was later found.

Arnette said he deliberately placed the body in a "main path" through the woods and left one of her arms sticking up, expecting that her body would be discovered. He also told Cook that he had called a phone number designated for taking tips on the missing woman and told them where to find her body.

Under cross-examination from Moore, Cook said phone records show that Arnette actually called a number "close" to the information line, but not the correct phone number.

Moore also attempted to get Cook to testify that Mrs. Arnette's then-current boyfriend, Angel Martinez, was also a "person of interest" in the investigation. But under further questioning by Harris, Cook explained that investigation showed Martinez was at work at the time of Mrs. Arnette's disappearance.

Cook and other deputies also testified that Arnette had many chances to tell them about the supposed discovery of the hanging body, but never did so until his statement to Cook.
http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/08/21/niece_arnette_admitted_causing_estranged_wifes_death

   

MuffyBee:
Man testifies Arnette told him he got tips on how to kill from 'CSI'
By Steve Bauer
Friday, August 22, 2008
URBANA A former Urbana man now in jail on a sex-crime charge testified Thursday that Robert Arnette spoke of learning ways to kill his wife from television.
(more)
http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/08/22/man_testifies_arnette_told_him_he_got_tips_on_how_to_kill_from_csi

Jury convicts Robert Arnette of killing his estranged wife
By Steve Bauer
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
URBANA Robert Arnette was convicted Monday of killing his estranged wife, Naomi, and burying her body in the woods south of Sadorus to hide the murder.

The jury of seven men and five women found the 39-year-old Arnette guilty of the charges of murder and concealment of a homicidal death. Judge Thomas Difanis set sentencing for Dec. 3. Arnette faces sentences of 20 to 60 years on the murder and two to five years on the concealment charge. 
Mrs. Arnette was missing for more than four months before her remains were found in a shallow grave south of Sadorus, where the couple lived before they separated. She was reported missing by her sister-in-law, Angela Roy, on May 21, 2007, after she failed to show up for work.

Mrs. Arnette's body was found on Sept. 30. The remains were confirmed as hers at an autopsy two days later, because they matched her dental records. Dr. Scott Denton, a forensic pathologist based in Bloomington, testified Monday that a rayon shirt or blouse was found twisted or rolled around the neck of Mrs. Arnette.

"It was around the neck tightly," he said.

Denton could not say with certainty just how Mrs. Arnette died.
Denton said Mrs. Arnette died of an undetermined means, with "a probable homicidal method."

Under questions from Assistant State's Attorney Duke Harris, Denton said it was his opinion that Mrs. Arnette had not hanged herself with an electrical cord. In answer to a later question by Harris, Denton said the cloth would have been sufficient to cause asphyxiation or strangulation.

Evidence presented in the trial last week showed Arnette told Champaign County sheriff's investigator Shane Cook that he found his wife's body hanging in the basement of her home. Arnette said he destroyed a suicide note and then packed her body in a plastic tote, taking it to a wooded area where it was found months later.

Harris said after the verdict was announced that the case was a "terrible tragedy."

"She was the mother of seven kids," Harris said. "The acts of Robert Arnette have impacted a lot of folks."

Harris said there is nothing the prosecutors or police can do to fill that void, but at least these verdicts allow the family to turn another page. He praised the efforts of the Champaign County sheriff's office, particularly those of Cook, who led the investigation. Harris also pointed to the work of EquuSearch, a Texas-based volunteer search organization that found the remains Oct. 1.

"But for them, we might not be where we are today," Harris said.

In final arguments Monday, Harris said Arnette had many opportunities over 100 days to tell authorities or family members where he had placed the body.

"He took the body of his 36-year-old wife and put it in a tote," Harris said. "He took the tote, drove it out in the country and buried his wife."

Harris argued that key testimony came from a niece, Rosanna Deedrick, who had been close to Arnette and confronted him on Aug. 7, asking if he had killed his wife, if he had choked or strangled her, to which he said yes.

Harris pointed to several inconsistencies in Arnette's stories, including the persistent denial of her whereabouts or what had happened to her. The prosecutor also said Arnette said he found his wife hanging from an orange extension cord and that her body was placed on a "main path" in the woods.

"She was put out there by this defendant for one reason," Harris argued. "Robert Arnette did everything he could do to destroy the physical evidence, and he almost got away with it."

Robert Arnette's lawyer, Assistant Public Defender Emily Monroe, argued that the cause of death was undetermined.

"If the experts don't know it, how can you say beyond a reasonable doubt that this man killed his wife," Monroe asked the jury.

She said that the evidence by the prosecution doesn't prove anything against Arnette.

Monroe said no reason was given as to why Arnette was arrested for the murder. She said it was based on a "hunch" by Cook and that he was then "fishing" for proof.

As to whether there was a path in the woods, Monroe said the grass could have grown over the trail between May and September.
http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/08/26/jury_convicts_robert_arnette_of_killing_his_estranged_wife

MuffyBee:
Town Reacts to Arnette Verdict
Play Media
Reported by: Stacey Morgan / WCIA 3 News

Monday, Aug 25, 2008 @10:12pm CST
Naomi Arnette's body was found South of Sadorus last fall. The whole community pulled together in a search that lasted months. And tonight, the town is feeling some relief, now that they know who is responsible for her death.

The town of Sadorus turned upside down in its search for Naomi Arnette. And almost a year later, people have found closure.

"We all can be content that we know who did it," said Tonya Turpin, who helped search for Naomi, "and not wonder if we have to keep our doors locked or if there is someone out there that they are still looking for."

A Champaign County jury found Robert Arnette responsible for her death. Prosecutors say his story never added up.

"It wasn't until she was actually found," says State's Attorney Julia Rietz, "that he came up with this completely ridiculous story about finding her body hanging in the basement. "

The verdict was bitter sweet for Robert's sister, Angela Roy.   "I Never thought he could do this," she cried. She is heartbroken for her brother, but finds peace in finding Naomi's killer.

"Because we haven't been able to put her to rest until this was over," says Roy. "But now with it over, maybe we can get closure.

The town of Sadorus is ready to move on as well.

"We hope he gets what he gets coming," says Turpin.

Robert Arnette faces up to 60 years in prison. Prosecutors will ask for the maximium sentence .  He'll be back in court innovember.

http://illinoishomepage.net/content/fulltext/?cid=27981

Sam:
I want to mention something else that was helpful in the search for Naomi. I think I said in an earlier post somewhere there were around 200 search volunteers. These search volunteers were not all from Sadorus. The folks of Sadorus were involved in other ways.

I know it is to late to do this in the case of Caylee Anthony but the food donations were tremendous. Townspeople cooked both days for those involved in the search. There was donuts and coffee for the searchers when they arrived. A Pizza place donated pizza. There were donations of all sorts of paper goods. Paper plates, cups and even toilet paper. There were cases of bottled water. plastic forks etc.

I think Old Fart called newspapers etc to get the word out about volunteers being needed. He may have even called for some of the donations. I wish Caylee's family had tried getting some help for Donations for Tes searchers. Also calling newspapers begging for searchers.

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