WILLINGTON, Connecticut — UPDATE as of Wednesday, May 27: State Police confirmed Wednesday, Peter Manfredonia was found in Maryland and is in police custody. Click here for the latest information.
Amid the still developing story of the manhunt for Peter Manfredonia, the Willington community is coming out to support Ted DeMers. All day Wednesday people stopped by the town green with candles to remember the 62 year old. Rose Nichols of Willington said, "I think that this is the time to show people that you care."
A makesift memorial has also been established outside him home on Mirtl Road. But the candles on the town green will be lit up Wednesday and Thursday night and circled by a parade of vehicles. "I’ve had tragedy in my life as most of us have and I just wanted them to know that they weren’t alone," said Nichols. It’s clear the death of Ted DeMers has affected the entire community. "What has been really really clear is that Ted affected a lot of people are touched there hearts in a way that we never even knew," said Pat Jones, DeMers' Sister-In-Law.
Back on Mirtl Road, new clues are emerging into Manfredonia’s possible motive. Ted’s sister-in-law confirmed they believe Manfredonia came to the area to confront one of their neighbors. A woman who Manfredonia knew. They believe Ted intercepted Manfredonia before he got to her. "He was standing down here looking like he was trying to decide something. He was headed in that direction and we think he think he threw out the name of this neighbor and that’s how he gained Ted’s trust," said Jones.
Manfredonia allegedly made up a story. He told Ted he was trying to get to his motorcycle at the end of the road. Ted gave him a ride and was stabbed to death. Another neighbor was also seriously wounded, but is expected to survive. The DeMers family told FOX61 they cant rest or begin to heal until Manfredonia is apprehended. "It’s very hard for us to feel like we can really move forward in a significant way with the healing process because this case is still open this person is still out there so there constantly this level of anxiety and fear and uncertainty always in the back of your mind," said Jones.
Pat then answered a difficult question with incredible strength and grace. She explained what she would say to Peter if he were standing in front of her. "I’d say this just needs to stop. I don’t know what your reasons are but this just needs to stop. This is the kind of situation where words can’t even do justice to what you are feeling. If I saw Peter in front of me right now, I can’t really say what I would do or say."
The DeMers family says they’ve been frustrated by some inaccurate media reports. They want to make it clear that their home is not where Manfrednonia allegedly stole guns. That was a different home in Willington where Manfredonia allegedly held a man hostage.
Nearly $62,000 has been raised to help support the DeMers family. Also in Willington on Wednesday evening at 6:30 a special virtual town meeting is being held with the selectmen to discuss the hunt for Manfredonia.
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