FOX25 Investigates: Questions remain after arrest of man accused of Princeton murdering

FOX25 Investigates: Questions remain after arrest of man accused of murdering Vanessa Marcotte
By Eric Rasmussen, Erin Smith

Prosecutors say DNA collected from 31-year-old Angelo Colon-Ortiz is a near-perfect match to the DNA evidence left behind on Vanessa Marcotte’s hands as she tried to fight off her killer last summer.

Colon-Ortiz has been charged with aggravated assault and assault with intent to rape, but not yet for Marcotte’s murder

Prosecutors say that charge is coming, but there are still many questions remaining in the case of the former Google executive, who was out for a run near her mother’s home Aug. 7 when she was attacked and killed.

Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.  announced Colon-Ortiz’s arrest over the weekend, but State Police and prosecutors still haven’t said exactly where Colon-Ortiz was working and living at the time of Marcotte’s.

So far the DA has only said Colon-Ortiz was working in the area around the time Marcotte was attacked and killed.

There were also questions about whether Colon-Ortiz was here legally and on Monday, State Police would only say that “he does not appear to have committed any violations of federal immigration laws.”

Also on Monday, federal immigration officials told FOX25 that their understanding is Colon-Ortiz is from Puerto Rico – and not in the U.S. illegally.

Prosecutors have credited a state trooper who spotted Colon-Ortiz – and his dark SUV that matched the suspect vehicle in the case – in Worcester.

Police say the trooper followed up to get a voluntary DNA sample from Colon-Ortiz.

Boston defense attorney Peter Elikann told FOX25 there is likely a concentrated effort to use that DNA sample to see if Colon-Ortiz could be connected to any other cases.

“If there's any unsolved cases here or anywhere in the area where this particular suspect has been – and maybe he's been in other states also – they have to leave no stone unturned,” said Elikann. “They are really just at the beginning of their investigation to determine whether there are any other victims.”

Marcotte went out for a run in Princeton on Aug. 7 and police have said her body was later found naked, burned and possibly sexually assaulted.

Less than two months earlier, another female runner reported to police that she was chased and assaulted by a man in Northboro – about 20 miles away from Princeton.

That case remains unsolved as of Monday.

Colon-Ortiz is being held on $10 million bail and he’s expected to make his first court appearance Tuesday morning.

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