Murder of elderly woman stuns East Poultney

Murder occurred July 2

A murder of an elderly woman has rocked the small, rural Vermont community of East Poultney. Residents are stunned about the violent crime, the first one to hi the community in 50 years.

At approximately 12:23 p.m. on July 2, the Vermont State Police Rutland Barracks received a 911 call regarding an unresponsive female at a residence at on Green Road, near Bird Street, in East Poultney.

Emergency responders with Poultney Rescue and members from the Vermont State Police were dispatched immediately. Gertrudes Alwardt, 79 of East Poultney, was transported to the Rutland Regional Medical Center; where she later died.

Detectives from the Vermont State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation responded to both the residence and the hospital.

Through the course of the investigation, detectives spoke with Alwardt’s adoptive son, Roderick Geronimo, 49, of East Poultney. Detectives were able to determine that Geronimo used physical violence to kill Alwardt.

Geronimo was arrested this afternoon, July 2, for second degree murder and processed at the Rutland State Police Barracks. Geronimo was lodged on $1 million bail, at the Marble Valley Regional Correctional Facility. Geronimo is scheduled to be arraigned at the Rutland County District Court July 3, to answer to the charges of 2nd Degree Murder, a violation of Title 13 Vermont Statutes Annotated 2301.

Detectives are being assisted by members of the Vermont State Police Crime Scene Search Team.

Alwardt’s body will be transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner where an autopsy will be performed. At this time, the official cause and manner of Alwardt’s death are pending the completion of the autopsy.

No other information is available at this time, as this continues to be an active investigation.

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