May 13, 2011

Records of investigation into slaying of Portland woman sealed for 90 days

It's unclear what led police to arrest three men in the Dittmeyer killing.

By Ann S. Kim
Staff Writer

and David Hench
Staff Writer

Investigation documents in the killing of Krista Dittmeyer will remain sealed for 90 days, officials in New Hampshire said Thursday.

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Krista Dittmeyer

Anthony Papile
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Anthony Papile

Additional Photos Below

The decision means that information about the Portland 20-year-old's death contained in search warrant affidavits, the autopsy report and other investigative paperwork will not be made public in the near future.

Authorities said Wednesday that three New Hampshire men had been arrested in the slaying. Anthony Papile, 28, of Ossipee was charged with second-degree murder in Ossipee District Court. Michael Petelis, 28, of Ossipee was charged with conspiracy to commit robbery, as was Trevor Ferguson, 23, of Tamworth.

Papile, who faces life in prison if convicted, was ordered held without bail. Petelis and Ferguson, who each face as much as 15 years in prison, were ordered held on $250,000 bail. All three are scheduled to appear in court next Thursday for a hearing at which the state must show it had probable cause to arrest them.

Prosecutors have 90 days to present the case to a grand jury for indictment, said New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General Jane Young.

The case drew national attention after Dittmeyer's Nissan Sentra was found idling in a parking lot at the Cranmore Mountain Resort in North Conway, N.H., around 6:30 a.m. April 23. Dittmeyer was gone and her toddler was strapped into a car seat in the back, unharmed. Searchers located Dittmeyer's body four days later in a nearby pond.

Authorities said Wednesday that Dittmeyer was attacked as part of a scheme to steal drugs and money. They also filed court documents outlining what they believe happened to Dittmeyer, who lived in Portland and worked as a waitress at a South Portland restaurant.

The documents say Petelis, whom the prosecution described as Dittmeyer's friend and self-proclaimed protector, had arranged to meet her April 22 at his apartment in Ossipee. He sent a text message at 9:43 p.m. that told her to send him a text when she arrived.

As she climbed the stairs to Petelis' second-floor apartment, Papile ambushed Dittmeyer, hitting her on the head three times with a rubber club, the documents say.

Papile and Petelis then bound Dittmeyer with duct tape and put her in the trunk of her car, and Papile drove the car about 20 miles to Cranmore Mountain, the documents say. They make no mention of Dittmeyer's 14-month-old daughter, who was in the car.

Papile allegedly removed Dittmeyer from the trunk and disposed of her bound body in the snowmaking pond several hundred yards away. The documents say Papile caused Dittmeyer's death by "suffocating and/or drowning."

Papile got a ride with Ferguson back to Ossipee, where the three men divided the money and drugs they had stolen from Dittmeyer, the documents say. Authorities have not said what drugs or how much money, other than to note that Papile gave Ferguson $20 in gas money for driving him home from the ski area.

The father of Dittmeyer's daughter, Kyle Acker, 26, is serving a two-year sentence in Maine for drug trafficking.

Hollie West of Conway said Thursday that she can't believe the godfather of her 3-year-old daughter, Callia, is now in jail, accused of ambushing and bludgeoning Dittmeyer.

"Tony Papile is not capable of killing somebody," West said in a telephone interview. "Tony is a very intelligent man. He's too smart for this."

West said she refuses to accept that Papile could bind anyone in duct tape, much less commit murder. She described him as a good man and a hard worker who doesn't use drugs and isn't at all aggressive.

She said she got to know Papile through her daughter's father about five years ago in Ossipee. West said the two men are no longer friends because Callia's father was "relatively abusive" and Papile couldn't tolerate that.

(Continued on page 2)

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Additional Photos

Michael Petelis
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Michael Petelis

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Trevor Ferguson


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