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Man sentenced in connection with Fairfield woman’s death

Published: Jul. 26, 2021 at 4:47 PM EDT
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FAIRFIELD, Ohio (WXIX) - A 31-year-old man was sentenced Monday to a minimum of 17 years in prison for the death of Katherine Lobono.

Kirby Cheong, 31, pleaded guilty in June for a lesser charge of involuntary manslaughter with a three-year gun specification.

In October 2019, Fairfield police said Katherine, 23, was found dead in her apartment on Chapel Hill Drive.

She had multiple gunshot wounds and other injuries, according to a coroner’s report.

A brutal murder her loved ones say should have never happened.

“Sadly, it was her big heart and unconditional love that was taken advantage of by an evil person,” Grace Lobono, Katherine’s mom, said. “She believed he had cancer and even when she did not want to date him any longer, she still cared about helping him and he took advantage of her goodness. She took that lie that he had cancer to her grave.”

After the victim’s death, Fairfield Police Department investigators filed an arrest warrant for...
After the victim’s death, Fairfield Police Department investigators filed an arrest warrant for Cheong, the release says.(Butler County Sheriff's Office)

Katherine’s friends and family were in court Monday as Cheong received his sentence.

On behalf of Katherine’s father John Lobono, Michael Gabbard from Crossroads Westside Church said this in court:

“I want all to know that over the last two and a half years, we have heard from friends how she gave money to someone, how she paid someone’s bill or brought them food. This is who she was, but because of this act of evil, I will never get to see my baby truly find love, get married, maybe have children. This will leave a major void in my life.”

Katherine’s sister Angie also had a statement to read but she was unable to get through it.

Victim advocate Amanda Rose took over for her.

“The world and my world are a little darker now that she is gone,” Rose read to the court. “She had such a big a colorful personality that no one could dim. She could never fit in because she was born to stand out. Even though her time on this physical earth is over, her memory will continue to stand out through each family member and friend in this room today, sincerely Angie Lobono.”

Katherine’s family says they are in the process of starting a foundation, “Kady’s Hope,” in her memory.

Cheong was sentenced to a minimum of 17 years in prison and a maximum of 22 and a half years, the judge said.

Once Cheong is released, the judge ordered a mandatory post-release control period for five years.

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