A woman went missing while camping. Then her husband confessed to her brutal murder

Fall foliage in Vermont – Credit: Tayfun Coskun / Anadolu Agency / Getty Images

Married during the pandemic, Joseph and Emily Ferlazzo were supposed to celebrate their first wedding anniversary with a scenic camping trip to Vermont. The couple left Northfield, New Hampshire on Friday, October 15, driving the converted bus that was also their home, in which they lived on the property of Emily’s parents. They traveled just over two hours to Bolton, Vermont, a rural town in the western foothills of the Green Mountains, 30 miles east of Burlington and on the shores of Lake Champlain. Joseph’s sister and her boyfriend had rented an Airbnb nearby.

But on Monday, October 18, Joseph, 41, returned home without Emily, 22. He told his parents they had an argument in a parking lot on Saturday. He said he held her back when she tried to leave, and that she kicked him in the groin. After that, he told his parents, he left to go to the store and Emily told him that she was going to bring an Uber back to New Hampshire. It was the last time he had heard from her.

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After speaking with Joseph, Emily’s mother and stepfather reported her missing. They told police they were aware of three or four incidents of domestic violence in the couple’s relationship, that they had seen Emily with scratches and bruises, and Emily had told her mother they were coming. of a physical altercation with Joseph.

Meanwhile, Joseph brought his red Jeep Wrangler back to Vermont. Just after midnight on October 19, according to the affidavit of a Vermont police officer, someone named Spencer Lemons called 911 saying Joseph had just confessed to killing his wife. Lemons, whose relationship to Joseph has not been clarified, said he drove Joseph to his campervan, which was parked at a residence in the town of St. Albans, Vermont, about an hour north -West of Bolton, where Emily and Joseph had stayed. As they approached the bus, Lemons asked Joseph why there were state soldiers around the camper van. According to an affidavit, Joseph told her it was because Emily was inside and she was not alive. Lemons asked him if he had killed her and Joseph replied, “Yes. At that point, Lemons said, he kicked Joesph out of his car and called the cops. The two men left the area and officers later found Joseph at a nearby gas station.

Emily Ferlazzo and Joseph Ferlazzo - Credit: Vermont State Police

Emily Ferlazzo and Joseph Ferlazzo – Credit: Vermont State Police

Vermont State Police

During police questioning on Tuesday, October 19, Joseph revealed that their trip had not been the peaceful fall getaway it appeared to be. He said that after they arrived in Bolton, he and Emily started arguing. According to his statement, which was released as part of the criminal complaint against him, they spent time with his sister and her boyfriend before heading back to their campervan that night and continuing to fight. He said she punched and kicked him in the arm and groin during the altercation. After things calmed down, Emily lay down on the bed in the camper van. Joseph told the cops she was there for five to ten minutes. Then he grabbed a Glock handgun from a cabinet, “jumped at her” and fired two shots in her head.

According to Joseph’s statement to the police, after shooting her, he panicked. He put a garbage bag over her head to collect the blood and took her to the camper’s toilet. He left her there while he went to lunch with his sister and her boyfriend in Waterbury, where tourists can visit the original Ben & Jerry’s ice cream factory. After breakfast he moved the RV to a friend’s house in St. Albans and dismembered his body. He told police he had cut off her hands, feet, legs and head with a handsaw. When finished, he put the body parts in garbage bags and left them in the motorhome.

Police found eight bags in the camper van, one of which contained what appeared to be a severed human leg, the missing foot and the rest appeared to be human remains. Authorities sent the bags to the medical examiner for an autopsy.

The case has parallels to the high-profile Gabby Petito affair, which began as a search for a missing person after Petito’s fiance Brian Laundrie returned from a road trip in a converted van without her in early September. Petito has been found strangled to death near a Wyoming campground a few weeks later. Laundrie is seen as a person of interest in his death, but he himself has been missing for over a month. Authorities on Wednesday announced the discovery of human remains in their search for him, as well as some of his personal belongings, although the remains have not yet been identified.

After a police video was released showing Petito crying in the back of a patrol car following a physical altercation with Laundrie, the case has drawn attention to the potential for domestic violence in the city. #vanlife community, where a nomadic lifestyle can facilitate the isolation of an abuser from a victim of their support systems, and small living quarters can cause anger. “We have seen it with Covid and the increase in physical violence or domestic violence where we have seen more reports of escalating violence between family members,” said Maureen Curtis, vice president of criminal justice programs at Safe Horizon, a national domestic violence hotline. Rolling stone. “People were confined to tight spaces. So yes it is not surprising if I travel in a motorhome it could lead to an escalation of violence if there is already some type of VI.

Joseph Ferlazzo was arrested on Wednesday and pleaded not guilty. When Rolling Stone reached out to the defense attorney assigned to Ferlazzo for comment, General Defender Matthew Valerio responded. “Sir. Ferlazzo is innocent in law with the full panoply of statutory and constitutional rights and defenses available to him,” Valerio said. “The client retains this status until the state proves his case beyond any reasonable doubt or that the client decides to waive their rights and change their plea. “

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