The man who killed a woman and dumped her body alongside I-25 in Douglas County has been found guilty on all counts related to the murder and will spend the rest of his life in prison.
A Douglas County District Court jury on Wednesday found Mihail Petrov, 38, guilty of first-degree murder after deliberation and seven other counts related to the death of Shelby Weatherly, who was 24.
Weatherly’s body was found by a passing motorist along southbound Interstate 25 near the Greenland exit in unincorporated Douglas County on Sept. 30, 2017. An autopsy found 19 stab wounds and over 50 injuries.
“This cold-blooded killer stabbed an innocent young woman 19 times, including to both sides of her neck, her jugular, and her heart. He caused 14 other cuts and 39 other external abrasions. And then he dumped her body like garbage,” said District Attorney George Brauchler. “There is no room in our society for such a monster. Life without the possibility of parole—ever—is the only appropriate sentence our system can give.”
Petrov was identified after an intensive investigation by the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. Forensic evidence, videos, photos and witnesses all played a part. Petrov’s fingerprints were on items found with Weatherly’s body — some of those items were linked back to Petrov; Weatherly’s blood was found on Petrov’s clothing and in his car; and Petrov admitted to two people he had killed someone who was on the news.
He asked one of those people, “Do you want to smell human blood?”
When Petrov was arrested Oct. 13, 2017, he was in a stolen vehicle and was carrying cocaine and methamphetamine. He attempted to escape after being arrested but was unsuccessful.
“This is the man who killed Shelby, dumped her body and was caught literally red-handed,” Senior Chief Deputy District Attorney Jason Siers told the jury during closing arguments.
The jury agreed.
Petrov was found guilty of:
• Murder1, after deliberation (Class 1 felony)
• Two counts — Tampering with a deceased human boy (Class 3 felony)
• Attempted escape (Class 5 felony)
• Tampering with physical evidence (Class 6 felony)
• Motor vehicle theft (Class 6 felony)
• Two counts — Possession of a Schedule 1 or 2 controlled substance (Drug felony Class 4)
In a separate hearing Thursday, Petrov was found to be a habitual criminal. Sentencing is set for April 30. The statutory sentence for first-degree murder is life in prison without the possibility of parole.