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Police & Fire

Manfredonia Arrest Warrant Reveals Horrific Killing, Home Invasion

Peter Manfredonia following his arrest.
Peter Manfredonia following his arrest. Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

In harrowing detail, Connecticut State Police outlined the circumstances surrounding the deaths of two people allegedly at the hands of a Fairfield County college student in a newly released arrest warrant.

The warrant for Peter Manfredonia, 23, a 2015 Newtown High School graduate, released on Monday, June 29, details the University of Connecticut student's first attack on two men with a samurai sword who offered to give him a ride to his motorcycle.

In the warrant, witnesses outline how they discovered 62-year-old Ted DeMers in Willington, Connecticut, on Friday, May 22, along with John Franco, 80, who was injured in the attack.

DeMers, according to the warrant, was found with "his right hand completely severed from his body, his thumb, and index finger completely severed from his left hand the flesh from his tricep area almost completely severed from his body, multiple lacerations to his back and a laceration down to his skull, with fracturing of the skull."

He was transported to Rockville General Hospital but was pronounced dead during transport.

Franco was found with "serious and potentially life-threatening injuries to his head and upper torso." Due to the severity of his injuries, he was transported by helicopter to Hartford Hospital where he underwent surgery and survived.

Manfredonia reportedly rode his motorcycle around the two men, starring at them before he rode away.

Hours later, Manfredonia is identified as the suspect after state police locate his motorcycle in a wooded area and they speak with a woman he is friends with, the warrant said.

On Saturday, May 23, Manfredonia allegedly conducted a home invasion in Willington, at the residence of a 73-year-old man, who was found tied to a chair in the basement, the warrant said.

The man told police that he was asleep in his chair when he woke up around 5:15 a.m., with a gun to the back of his head and a man telling him not to turn around or he would "blow my (f-ing) brains out," the warrant said.

For the next 24 hours or more, the man was bound with zip ties and duct tape to a chair as Manfredonai allegedly talked about his himself,  his family, and the first attack, the whole time, coming and going from being nice to expressing a "blank stare" and dead eyes. 

During his time in the home, he stole guns, ammo, credit cards, food, supplies, and the man's truck. He let the man live when he left, without physically injuring him, the warrant said.

At one point during the stay, Manfredonai told the captive man that he didn't know why he was killing people, but said: "he hadn’t slept for five days and he just flipped."

He then told the man “he was going to have two good weeks and then he figured it would end in a shootout, the death penalty, or life in prison."

After leaving, Manfredonai went on to kill another person, kidnap a woman before he was captured Hagerstown, Maryland, Wednesday, May 27 after five days on the run.

He has been charged with murder, criminal attempt to commit murder, assault, home invasion, kidnapping with a firearm, robbery, larceny, two counts of first-degree stealing a firearm, and assault of an elderly person.

The warrant released Monday did not detail the second murder or the kidnapping. 

Manfredonia, who was returned to Connecticut, is being held on a $7 million bond. 

He is scheduled to appear in court on Friday, July 10.

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