SUS­PECT

The Covington News - - Lo­cal news -

Ox­ford. Fan­tauzzi was wanted for a 1987 rape and mur­der of a woman at a mall in St. Pe­ters­burg, Fla.

The vic­tim was found dead near the mall. She had been raped and stran­gled. Ac­cord­ing to Alex Ca­ma­cho, an in­ves­ti­ga­tor with the U.S. Mar­shal Ser­vice, Fan­tauzzi had been a sus­pect in the case, but there was not enough ev­i­dence to charge him then. How­ever, with ad­vances in foren­sic science, in 2007 DNA ev­i­dence linked Fan­tauzzi to the crime. Author­i­ties in Florida con­tacted the New­ton County Sher­iff’s Depart­ment to ask for as­sis­tance in cap­tur­ing Fan­tauzzi be­cause they dis­cov­ered he had an ad­dress listed in Cov­ing­ton. The sus­pect had a war­rant in New­ton County for vi­o­lat- ing his pa­role in a DWI case, and also a pa­role war­rant from Hills­bor­ough County, Fla. for deal­ing in stolen prop­erty. “The guys from Florida saw that when they ran his name through the sys­tem, he was wanted in New­ton County and they con­tacted New­ton County and re­quested as­sis­tance in try­ing to lo­cate him,” Ca­ma­cho said.

In May, the U.S. Mar­shals Ser­vice was called in to as­sist in the cap­ture. Ca­ma­cho said the ser­vice is usu­ally con­tacted when there are vi­o­lent crimes in­volved. “At this time, a war­rant (for the mur­der) for him had not been is­sued, but he was a sus­pect. Be­cause of the al­le­ga­tions, we adopted the case,” Ca­ma­cho said.

Fan­tauzzi was ar­rested May 16 and trans­ferred back to Florida, where he ap­peared in court. In Au­gust, he was re­leased two days be­fore the war­rant for the mur­der was is­sued. Author­i­ties be­lieved he re­turned to the Cov­ing­ton area.

Fan­tauzzi is be­ing held in the New­ton County De­ten­tion Cen­ter. He is charged with felony mur­der. If con­victed, he faces the death penalty.

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