By DEANNE JOHNSON
LISBON - The man accused of removing two guns and drugs from his brother's home, including the weapon believed to have been used to kill Holly Carosiello in August 2011, was sentenced in Columbiana County Common Pleas Court Friday to 24 months in prison.
Anthony Carosiello, 26, Hillcrest Road, Wellsville, pleaded guilty in October to three counts tampering with evidence. Assistant County Prosecutor Tammie Riley Jones said as part of a plea agreement Carosiello was to cooperate and testify truthfully in any and all court hearings involving Holly Carosiello's death.
Anthony Carosiello was accused of trying to conceal the evidence during the murder investigation.
"Whenever anyone impedes a criminal investigation it's really a crime against society as a whole," said Judge C. Ashley Pike prior to imposing the state's recommended 2-year sentence.
Jones said Carosiello went to the Township Line Road home of his brother, Nicholas Carosiello, Holly Carosiello's estranged husband, on Aug. 12 following the murder of Holly Carosiello. She said investigators believe Anthony Carosiello saw Holly Carosiello's dead body before concealing and removing what he believed to be the murder weapon so law enforcement would not find it.
Secondly, on Aug. 13, Anthony Carosiello's brother came to his home and gave him another weapon, which was the actual murder weapon. Anthony Carosiello took the gun and threw it into the Ohio River.
Finally, later in the day on Aug. 13, Anthony Carosiello reportedly took a plastic shopping bag full of marijuana, hid it in the trunk of his vehicle and removed it from the Township Line Road property at his brother's request. Nicholas Carosiello then reportedly retrieved it later.
"Tampering with the marijuana affected not only the evidence in the burglary offense, but also a felony level possession or trafficking offense," Jones said. "Tampering with evidence related to murder, burglary and felony drug offenses is extremely serious. Someone died and the defendant's actions have impeded the investigation."
No charges have been filed against Nicholas Carosiello, whose home Holly Carosiello, her brother Jamie Adkins and Dustin Green were allegedly attempting to burglarize that night.
Adkins and Green have been convicted on burglary-related charges. Another man, Joshua Rudder was convicted of being the driver for the group.
Anthony Carosiello's defense attorney Gerald Ingram pointed out his client's brother is older than him by six years and it was his brother, who got him involved in what happened. Ingram said he believes it is unlikely Anthony Carosiello will recommit the same crime again.
"I have younger brothers and I have on numerous occasions led astray," Ingram said, adding although not the extent of the Carosiello situation. "He's a cooperating witness. It's unlikely his brother will shoot someone again."
Ingram was the second defense attorney for one of the people charged in connection with Holly Carosiello's death to blame Nicholas Carosiello for his estranged wife's death. During Adkin's hearing, his attorney, Kelly Linger, had claimed her client would not have knowingly allowed his sister to be shot by Nicholas Carosiello and the group had believed no one to be home.
Holly Carosiello was reportedly shot in the head and killed when Adkins lifted her to a window.
Prior to sentencing Anthony Carosiello apologized for any inconvenience his actions caused the court and noted it was not something he had planned to become involved in.
"I did not wake up that day planning to commit a crime," he said, adding he does not believe he will ever return to court as a defendant.
Anthony Carosiello had faced up to nine years. A charge of obstructing official business and a firearms specification was dismissed as part of the plea agreement.