Two charged with murder in Hardwick after allegedly putting alcohol in disabled child’s IV bag

in News/Vermont

Hardwick Vermont homicide
HARDWICK — A mother of a 13-year-old boy who died on August 22, and her boyfriend, were arrested in Hardwick today and charged with second degree murder, after allegedly putting alcohol in the IV bag of the woman’s physically handicapped son.

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On August 22, police received a 911 call from the residence of Melissa Robitille and Walter Richter III, in the village of Hardwick, reporting a deceased 13 year old male. Officers were dispatched to the location, and upon arrival emergency medical personnel verified that the child was deceased.

Authorities initiated an investigation, and learned that the caller, Melissa Robitille, discovered her son, Isaac Robitille, deceased that morning. Investigators also learned that Isaac was born with significant medical conditions, including multiple physical handicaps that required the assistance of caretakers, feeding tubes, and IVs to keep him alive.

As part of the death investigation an autopsy was done to determine the cause and manner of death. Awaiting the final autopsy report and toxicology, the Hardwick Police Department along with detectives of the Vermont State Police continued to investigate the case.

The toxicology report came back on September 5, indicated that Isaac’s blood alcohol concentration was .146 percent. The medical examiner reported the cause of death as “Semi-Lobar Holoprosencephaly with a contributory cause of death as Alcohol” and the manner of death as “Homicide”.

Through the course of the on-going investigation, it was learned that Isaac’s mother and her boyfriend put alcohol in Isaac’s IV bag and administered it to him, ultimately becoming the contributory cause of Isaac’s death.

Robitille and Richter were arrested today and are both facing 2nd degree murder charges.

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