Vermont couple suspected in Highgate murder in court
ST. ALBANS, Vt. (WVNY/WFFF) – A shackled Erika Guttilla entered a Franklin County courtroom Tuesday. The 31 year-old is accused of killing Troy Ford in November and hiding his body in a trash bin for several months. Guttilla and Ford were dating at the time.
Guttilla exercised her 24-hour right Tuesday and did not enter a plea, which means she will be back in court Wednesday. Guttilla did plead guilty to unrelated charges and is being held without bail.
Court paperwork shows Guttilla told police that Ford was abusive and had been living at her family’s home in Highgate. According to the documents, Guttilla said the living situation became ‘unbearable’ and that she wanted to hurt Ford.
Police say dogwalkers found human remains Saturday in a wooded area off Darlene Road. Authorities later linked the remains to Ford by matching a tattoo on his arm.
Guttilla’s current boyfriend, Corey Cassani was also in court Tuesday. The 28 year-old is accussed of helping dispose Ford’s body. He pleaded not guilty Tuesday and in being held on $50,000 bail.
The pair were nabbed by police early Tuesday morning during a motor vehicle stop in South Burlington. Vermont State Police issed an officer-safety bulletin to all Vermont law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout for several vehicles linked to the couple. Police say their car was traced to a motel in South Burlington where a stakeout was initiated.
Guttilla’s mother, Carmen is also believed to be involved in Ford’s murder. Court documents show Guttilla used her mother’s gun to kill Ford. Carmen pleaded not guilty to conspiracy charges Monday and is currently being held without bail.
Suspects arrested in Highgate homicide
HIGHGATE, Vt. (WVNY/WFFF) – The man and woman that police were still looking for in connection with a homicide in Highgate have been arrested this morning.
Vermont State Police say they joined officers from South Burlington, Shelburne and the FBI to arrest Erika Guttilla, 31, and Corey Cassani, 28.
Authorities arrested them without incident at about 1:30 this morning following a traffic stop on Route 7 in South Burlington, just north of the Shelburne town line.
Erika Guttilla is being held without bail on a murder charge; Cassani’s bail is set at $25,000 for serving as an accessory after the fact. They’re expected to be arraigned at 1:00 this afternoon in St. Albans.
Discovery of human remains over the weekend lead to a Highgate woman’s arrest.
The remains were found in a wooded area Saturday by two people walking their dogs on Darlene Drive.
An investigation by Vermont State Police identified the body as Troy Ford, 35, of 161 Charles Circle, Highgate.
Troopers say Ford lived there with Michael and Carmen Guttilla and he was in a relationship with their daughter, Erika Guttilla, 31.
They say Erika shot and killed Ford several months ago and her mother along with a third person, Corey Cassani, 28, also of Highgate, were involved.
Carmen Guttilla, 60, was arrested Sunday night without incident.
She is facing a charge of aiding in the commission of a felony. She is being held without bail and will be arraigned Monday afternoon.
Arrest warrants have been issued for Erika Guttilla and Corey Cassani.
The car they were believed to be using was found in Swanton.
Erika Guttilla is a white female, 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing 120 pounds, with green eyes and blonde hair.
Corey Cassani is a white male, 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighing 165 pounds, with brown eyes and brown hair.
They should be considered armed and dangerous. Anyone with information about the case should call Vermont State Police.