Woman accused of luring man to his death in east side Youngstown murder gets sentence

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — A woman on trial for charges that she lured a Campbell man — who was later shot and killed — out of his home entered guilty pleas Thursday in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.

The pleas by Lyric Moore, 25, halted her trial before Judge Maureen Sweeney for her role in the Feb. 20, 2017 death of 40-year-old Zachary Howell.

Moore entered guilty pleas to charges of involuntary manslaughter, amended from aggravated murder and aggravated burglary. She was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

In exchange for her plea, two other charges and the firearm specifications in the case were dropped.

Howell was found shot to death and burned beyond recognition in a burned-out SUV behind a home at Edgar Street and Josephine Avenue on the far east side of Youngstown.

One of Howell’s sons, Zakaree Howell, said he thought the trial was “unfair.”

“I’ve seen people get more for less,” he said. “She’s the glue. Without her, this wouldn’t have happened.”

Assistant Prosecutor Michael Yacovone said he was not happy either. Still, he had some “apprehension” about going forward because it would be hard to prove to a jury that Moore was responsible for Howell’s death, although he added she is the person who helped set Howell up.

“It doesn’t happen without Lyric Moore,” Yacovone said.

Defense attorney Mark Lavelle said it would have been hard to convince jurors that the pause between the break-in at Howell’s home and Howell’s death could be linked to Moore.

Police said Moore worked with Terrell Martin, 40, to lure Howell out of his home to be robbed. Police found Moore’s cell phone at the crime scene, and traced it back to her and later to Martin.

Terrell Martin, charged with a 2017 Youngstown shooting death.

Martin pleaded guilty to charges of murder and aggravated robbery last year and is serving a prison sentence of 18 years to life.

In opening statements Tuesday, Moore’s attorney said she was forced out of Howell’s home by Martin and another man, and they took her phone so she couldn’t call police.

Moore spoke briefly Thursday and apologized to the family.

Another son, Zachary Howell Jr., said he did not like the plea either but he understood why it was accepted. He thanked the court and said his family could now begin to rest.

“I hope you get some closure, sir,” Judge Sweeney said.

Moore will get credit for over 1,600 days she has served in the county jail awaiting disposition of her case.

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