Death certificates obtained through the Vermont Department of Health revealed three women found dead in central Vermont this weekend were the victims of homicide.
48-year-old Rhonda Herring died in seconds from a single shot from a rifle, the document said. Her sister, Regina, 43, was shot twice. Their mother, 73-year-old Julie Ann Falzarano, was shot once with a rifle, the certificate said. In each of the cases, the documents said the women were shot by someone else, meaning, none of the deaths was a suicide.
Relatives told WPTZ-TV earlier this week that Falzarano was found in bed.
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"I can't believe my mom would do such a thing to her," Desiree Herring said. "Especially to kill somebody who is sleeping in her bed?"
Desiree Herring is the daughter of the suspect in the women's killings, Jody Herring. Jody Herring has not been charged with killing her cousins and aunt, but a complex police investigation is underway.
"We're doing a lot of investigation related to potential witnesses," Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell told reporters Monday. "And obviously, processing potential physical evidence."
Jody Herring’s family believes she might have blamed her cousins and aunt for the state stepping in and removing a young child from her care. Details on a potential motive are part of the ongoing investigation.
Police said anger over the loss of custody then drove Herring to hunt down the DCF social worker involved in her case. Lara Sobel died outside her office building, witnesses said, also shot with a rifle. A memorial service was held for Sobel Tuesday in Montpelier.
Jody Herring pleaded not guilty to Sobel's killing and her lawyer, David Sleigh, told reporters there's "more than meets the eye."
Sorrell indicated additional charges for the deaths of Jody Herring's three relatives could be brought in the coming days.