HIGHGATE — Carmen Guttilla’s defense team has filed a motion requesting the Franklin County Superior Court release Guttilla into home detention.
Home detention is exactly what it sounds like: incarceration in a residence under Vermont Department of Corrections (DOC) supervision.
The issue is scheduled for a motion hearing in the St. Albans criminal court next Monday, June 11.
A central issue is sure to be that Guttilla’s requested home detention site, her home here in Highgate, was the scene of the crime for which state prosecutors have charged her with first-degree murder.
Prosecutors charge it was in the Guttilla family home that Erika Guttilla, Carmen’s daughter, shot Troy Ford with Carmen’s personal handgun.
Prosecutors allege that Carmen and Erika discussed the crime beforehand, and that Carmen urged Erika to shoot Ford.
According to the court affidavit Vermont State Police (VSP) Det. Angela Baker filed, Carmen told police about those discussions, and said she urged Erika to shoot Ford because of his history of violent and emotionally abusive behavior.
Carmen pleaded not guilty to the first-degree murder charge.
St. Johnsbury-based attorneys David Sleigh and Kyle Hatt represent Carmen and filed the one-page motion May 21 on her behalf.
The motion contains no argument, just the assertion that Carmen meets the legal criteria for home detention.
State prosecutors have not filed a response to the motion as of press time.
Carmen, 60 years old, has been held in the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility, the nearest all-female prison, without bail since her May 7 arrest.
She faces 35 years to life in prison if convicted of first-degree murder.
If the court approves this motion for home detention, the DOC must then review Carmen’s application.
If the DOC approves the application, Carmen will return home to reside with her husband, Michael, and her children Melissa and Dakota, none of who have been charged in this case.
However, each of those three individuals made statements to police, according to Baker’s affidavit, and thus are witnesses in prosecutors’ case.
Franklin County Judge Martin Maley ordered Erika not to contact her mother or the above-listed family members while Erika is incarcerated. Carmen is currently under no such order.
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