Missing Sharon man’s debit card found on Shenango Twp. property

According to court papers, a person of interest in the case used Difrischia's card at the Hermitage Walmart on May 10

The remains of a body were found in a shallow grave in Shenango Township.

SHENANGO TWP., Ohio (WKBN) – Investigators said they recovered a debit card belonging to missing Sharon man Joseph Difrischia on the property in Shenango Township where human remains were discovered last week.

The 58-year-old has been missing since April. Police found his car on Millet Avenue in Youngstown with the keys in the ignition.

Joseph Difrischia
Joseph Difrischia

According to court papers, Difrischia’s card was used at the Hermitage Walmart on May 10. Surveillance video from the store shows a man, who investigators say is a person of interest in the case, using that card.

Sources say the person of interest has been in prison since August 8, when he was arrested on a parole violation just two days before the remains were found.

An affidavit filed this week indicates that authorities went to the site on Route 318 looking for Difrischia’s body.

Last week, a probation officer said an informant told him the property should be searched.

Court documents reveal the person of interest wanted a hole dug on the property to bury a dead dog inside a large trash can. The owner of the property told police he used a backhoe to dig the hole, which the informant claimed was large enough to fit the trash can.

The informant also told investigators he thought Difrischia had been buried there.

Police have not been able to positively identify the partial set of human remains found on the property. The coroner could only determine that they were the remains of a white male.

Search efforts have been suspended for the time being.

Investigators from Sharon, Shenango Township and Pennsylvania State Police plan to meet with the district attorney early next week to discuss the case and determine whether charges can be filed.

In the meantime, they also hope to confirm the identity of the remains next week with DNA testing.


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