Details Revealed In ’93 Lawrence Co. Cold Case Murder

NEW CASTLE (KDKA) — The recording of one of the men charged in the murder of a 15-year-old from Lawrence County back in 1993 was played in court Wednesday.

Joseph Marshall, 39, and 38-year-old Sean McDonough will stand trial for the murder of Laura Lynn Thompson.

The two men picked her up from her mother’s home and Laura was never seen again. She left behind a baby son.

Marshall waived his case to court, but McDonough listened to a recording of Marshall telling police what happened to Laura that night.

“The evidence that we produced today we believe is strong evidence that supports our case against both Joseph Marshall and Sean McDonough,” Lawrence County District Attorney Josh Lamancuso said.

In the recording, Marshall describes how the three drank beer at McDonough’s mother’s trailer in Shenango and then walked to a nearby cabin in the woods.

Marshall states that McDonough began flipping out, talking in a satanic voice and started stabbing Laura until she stopped moving. He then allegedly stripped her clothes off and had sex with her.

Marshall told how McDonough went back to the trailer, got a shovel and they dug a shallow grave.

Marshall’s wife Shannon went to police last July about the murder and helped get allegedly incriminating information with recorded cell phone calls and wire taps on the men.

Police arrested McDonough in Louisiana where a long lock of red hair was found in his apartment.

“There was multiple strands that was bound together,” Lamancuso said. “I can’t say with any sort of certainty whether or not that is part of Laura Thompson’s remains.”

Thompson had red hair. Her body has never been recovered. The search for her remains will resume in the spring.

Marshall and McDonough both face charges of homicide, conspiracy and abuse of a corpse. McDonough has an additional charge of rape.

  • Eric

    Try them and if found guilty kill them as they serve no purpose to society.

  • rojode

    They should rot in a 2 x 2 cell and have to stand 24 hours a day. Unbelieveable that these monsters are human.

  • Tim

    hit the nail on the head. They lived with us humans for 19 years. God only know what else they did. People like that should be killed and used as fertilizer for our farm land. Make use of these animals some how.

  • Ema Nekaf

    Of course they found red hair at Sean’s place. HIS WIFE has red hair!

  • wow

    I went to school with boy these idiots! Both of them were very strange people. I say chain them to a tree and let the family torcher the heck out of them then let them recover a little bit and do it all over again. Their could never could ever be another done but at least the family could get their own justice. May they rot in h@%%!

  • wow

    Ema Nekaf,
    Dont try to defend these cold blooded killers. You may of felt different if it was one of yours!

  • Ema Nakef

    I’m not trying to defend anyone. I’m just saying. That’s it. Why don’t they find some real evidence in this case? I haven’t heard of any body being found, no DNA tests, no real evidence except the word of a ticked off wife and a man who doesn’t want to go down alone. I want to hear something solid. Not hearsay and not what people THINK they know, that’s all. If Sean did this crime, then yes, he should do the time and pay with his life. But did he really do it? And if he did, did he do it alone?

  • Lacy

    They have been trying to find the body, but have been unsuccessful.

    Honestly, these two guys should rot in prison. What they did was horrible and they don’t deserve to live among us in society.

  • Really

    Who smiles in a mug shot? WTH?!?!?!?!

  • Eric

    There are creatures that roam the earth without a soul. These two just might be two of them. I would bet they never did anything constructive or worthwhile their entire worthless lives. Job to job, run-ins with the law, domestic issues at their residences, drugs, alcohol…..types like this are not hard to figure out. They follow a pattern. Anybody confirm my suspicions?

  • graveyard shift

    kill’em all let GOD sort em out………..

  • Ema Nakef

    Eric, I only know one of these men personally. He has held down his job for over 10 years and has never been in trouble with the law. There have been no domestic issues or drugs.

    Lacy, I’m wondering if anyone has ever questioned if the poor girl is even dead. We hear stories all the time about people who just walk away from their lives, change their identities and move on. I’m not saying this is what happened, but I wonder how it would feel to be a 15 year old with a baby to raise. It might be overwhelming to a lot of people. I also question why a 15 year old was out so late at night, apparently with parental permission. I have my own 15 year old and they are in the house and in bed during the hours this allegedly happened.

    Please understand that I am not trying to defend anyone here. I am just following the story to its outcome, simply choosing to not be judge and jury when the whole story hasn’t come out yet. We shouldn’t be so quick to judge when the only people who know what happened on that particular night are Joe, Sean and Laura, if in fact anything did happen. Also, if people are going to be put to death, shouldn’t there be irrefutable evidence against them to justify it? And what about Shannon Marshall? She supposedly knew of this alleged crime for over 17 years. Why isn’t she being held as an accessory after the fact and being charged with anything.

    This whole case is based on the accusation of a bitter woman against her husband. Why isn’t anyone investigating her motives? Why isn’t anyone investigating that there was never a cabin in those woods? I’ve been going through there for many, many years and never saw a cabin there. Why isn’t anyone investigating anything here? I, for one, am interested to see how this is going to turn out.

    • Lynn67

      I wish for comfort for the girls family and peace for my cousin Sean

  • Lindsey Holsinger Rubio

    To Fake Name(Ema Nakef): If you are going to leave such a uninformed comment you should also leave your real name. First off I sat in the courtroom at the prelim and looked in the face of my sisters murderer. Your friend Shawn is most def guilty. He never once look surprised by the recording of Joe Marshall’s statement to the police. As for the red hair may belonging to his wife, if the fat lady sitting behind him was her, those are two completly different colors of red. My sisters hair was a beautiful bright red not redish brown. Also, she would have NEVER left her son. Those two men will rot in hell for what they have done, and that won’t even be good enough. When they are dead and in the ground their families will still have somewhere to go visit and mourn them. That is something that we will never have. Because of what they did to Laura they changed the life path of the rest of us that love her. I wish nothing but hell on earth for anyone that loves them.

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