A 27-year-old Putnam County man was found guilty Wednesday and sentenced to life in prison without parole for the December 2016 murder of an Eatonton woman.
Jurors in Putnam Superior Court deliberated about an hour before finding Frank Don Causey guilty of felony murder, malice murder and aggravated assault in the strangulation and drowning death of Lydia Ivanditti.
Ivanditti, 63, former director of Eatonton’s Plaza Arts Center, was found dead, partially submerged in a bathtub, at her house on West Walnut Street on Dec. 2.
Testimony in the trial began Nov. 6.
Ivanditti and Causey were said to have known one another.
After the killing, investigators found Causey’s blood on Ivanditti’s smashed cellphone, parts of which were strewn near the tub. His blood was also on towels in the bathroom.
Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit District Attorney Stephen A. Bradley described Causey’s attack on Ivanditti as a “brutal crime.”
“There clearly was some dispute, there clearly was some struggle,” Bradley said, but as to why “we’ll never know for certain.”