Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

November 7, 2013

Man sentenced to 28 years for freezer killing

Cocaine charge nets 20 years while homicide garners 8 more

A man who killed another man and stuffed his body into an unplugged freezer was sentenced Wednesday to 28 years in prison.

Instead of facing a murder charge, Walter Logan, 53, pleaded guilty in Howard Circuit Court to reckless homicide in the 2012 death of 29-year-old Alex Shipp.

Logan also pleaded guilty to a Class B felony cocaine charge.

Howard Circuit Court Judge Lynn Murray accepted the open plea and sentenced Logan to the maximum of 28 years, which was 20 years on the Class B felony cocaine conviction and eight years for the Class C felony reckless homicide.

In sentencing Logan, Murray stated numerous aggravating circumstances, including the nature and circumstances of the crime and the fact that Logan recklessly caused Shipp’s death and intentionally hid the body in his home for weeks, “which showed the defendant’s depraved indifference toward the victim and his family members.”

Murray did take into consideration that Logan pleaded guilty, but the judge did not view that as a mitigating circumstance since Logan received a substantial benefit by having pleaded guilty, namely the state’s dismissal of the charges of murder and criminal confinement.

Judge Murray also ordered Logan to pay $1,804.35 in restitution for Shipp’s funeral expenses.

The case began when Shipp’s mother, Rebecca Wolf, went to police in November 2012 to file a missing person report on Shipp who she said she hadn’t been seen since Nov. 8, 2012.

In December, Wolf told police she had been contacted by someone who said they knew what happened to Shipp. That tip led police to Logan, who subsequently admitted to police he killed Shipp and placed his body in a freezer in his basement.

An argument the night before led to a scuffle and ultimately Shipp’s death, court records showed.

Logan told police that after the fight, he used duct tape to bind Shipp’s hands and feet and taped his mouth and nose. Logan further stated he fell asleep and once he awoke and realized Shipp was dead, he placed him in a freezer in his basement.

In exchange for his guilty pleas, Deputy Prosecutor Jeremy Peelle agreed not to pursue a murder charge and a charge of criminal confinement originally filed in the case.

Peelle said during Logan’s plea hearing that Shipp’s family members were advised of the plea and agreed to the terms of the deal.

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