Zanesville man charged with killing his grandmother

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A Zanesville man arrested in an attempted robbery in Columbus has been charged with killing his 64-year-old grandmother.

John Jenkins Jr., 26, was charged with multiple felonies, including aggravated murder and abuse of a corpse, in connection with the death of Elizabeth Alvarez, whose body was found May 30 in southwestern Franklin County. She is believed to have been killed on May 26.

Rachel Sipple, 20, of Zanesville, was also charged in connection with the death of Alvarez. She faces charges of evidence tampering, a third-degree felony, and abuse of a corpse, a fifth-degree felony.

The addresses for Jenkins and Sipple listed in county jail records are the same Zanesville house that records show Jenkins’ grandmother, Elizabeth Alvarez, purchased in 2015.

Jenkins and Sipple are both being held in the Franklin County jail on unrelated charges for an attempted robbery, but will be handed over to Muskingum County to face the charges.

Alvarez was reported missing on May 28 — the same day Jenkins attempted to use a pellet gun to rob a gas station at about 6:30 p.m.  in Columbus’ Hilltop neighborhood. The attempt was thwarted by a special-duty officer working in the store. Police said the officer, fearing for his safety, fired at Jenkins as he ran toward Alvarez’s car, being driven by Sipple. The car pulled away and a pursuit ensued that ended when Sipple crashed the car into a tree on North Star Avenue near Essex Road in Upper Arlington. The pair were arrested at the scene, police said.

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