Michigan Man Gets 15 Years In Prison In Burned Body Cold Case Killing

WWJ News
March 06, 2020 - 6:14 pm
Christopher McMillan

(credit: Eaton County Sheriff's Office)

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CHARLOTTE, Mich. (WWJ/AP) - A man who is one of three people charged in the 2002 slaying of a Michigan man has been sentenced to at least 15 years in prison.

The charred remains of Robert Caraballo weren't identified until 2015, years after they were discovered in a scorched foot locker in a blueberry field.

Christopher McMillan of Grand Rapids pleaded guilty in October to second-degree murder and was sentenced Thursday.

He's expected to help prosecutors in the case against his two co-defendants, including the victim's wife, who was arrested in Itlay last month

Beverly McCallum, 59, was taken into custody Feb. 12 after she and her teenage son checked into a Rome hotel on the northwest outskirts of the Italian capital. Italian hotels are required to register guests in an online system linked to a police database. The process revealed that McCallum had an Interpol arrest warrant against her, police said in a statement.

U.S. authorities had been seeking to extradite McCallum from Pakistan, where she was believed to be living, to stand trial in Caraballo's slaying.

Authorities said Caraballo was beaten and suffocated before his body was dumped and burned in a blueberry patch in western Michigan's Eaton County.  The identify of the victim remained unknown until an anonymous tip in 2015 helped police made the ID. 

According to the Lansing State Journal, investigators said McMillan told them McCallum pushed Caraballo down the basement stairs of a home, then beat him with a hammer.

The third person charged in the killing is McCallum's daughter, Dineane Ducharme, who was 21 years old at the time. She told police that it was her mother who killed Caraballo and that she helped dispose of her stepfather’s body.

In the years after the slaying, McCallum reportedly met a man from Pakistan online and moved there. Rome police said she had fled to Pakistan after learning police were on her trail.