YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – It has been more than five months since Anvia Mickens was murdered — her body, police say, found in the trunk of her boyfriend’s car in Niagara Falls, New York.
For the first time since the victim’s death, her family and friends came face-to-face with the suspect — JeShawn Elliott — as he appeared in a Youngstown courtroom on Monday.
Elliott was initially arrested in New York and extradited just a month ago.
Authorities believe that Elliott stabbed and strangled Anvia in Youngstown and then drove to New York, where he told relatives that he was going to kill himself. Police found him there and said they discovered the victim’s body in the trunk of his car.
Family members say the incident has been a continuing nightmare.
“Every day we wake up, we just realize that, ‘Wait, Anvia’s not here.’ So yeah, it’s still hard to process and is really difficult to believe that we’re gonna live without her being here with us, physically,” said Anvia’s sister, Carinda Mickens.
Monday morning, Elliott’s case was bound over to a Mahoning County grand jury.
He is jailed on a $2 million bond.
With the prospect of many more months before the case is resolved, family members said they will press for justice.
“One of the things that we realize is the wheels of justice always take long, but we stand on the side of justice, and we thank God that justice will happen, and we will seek justice on behalf of Anvia,” said the victim’s uncle, Pastor Kevin Turner.