SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

February 21, 2014

Peabody man faces murder charge

Suspect has history of domestic violence

PEABODY — A Peabody man with a history of domestic violence, including charges he threatened his girlfriend with a machete two years ago, has been charged with killing his girlfriend.

Franklin Castano, 43, showed up at the Lynn police station yesterday morning, and what he told police led them to his apartment at 50 Keys Drive, where his 23-year-old girlfriend was found dead, officials said.

He is scheduled to be arraigned this morning on a murder charge in Peabody District Court and was held without bail overnight at Middleton Jail, said Carrie Kimball Monahan, a spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office.

Police and prosecutors were tight-lipped about the case and did not release the name of the victim yesterday. They also declined to say how she died.

However, the woman was the same person who, in 2012, was allegedly threatened by Castano with a machete and butcher knife and assaulted in Lynn.

In that case, Castano was jealous that another man had put his arm around her during her 21st birthday party the night before, according to an account in the Lynn Item. The woman said that during the argument, Castano went to a closet, retrieved a machete and told her he would kill her. He also grabbed a butcher knife and waved it at her. The woman had a rug burn on her face, a swollen lip, and scratches and marks on her neck, the Item reported.

The woman told police a restraining order would not help her because she believed Castano would kill her, the newspaper reported.

The woman was also a victim of Castano in a 2010 domestic violence case in Salem.

According to a police report, the victim and Castano got into an argument after she questioned him about a late-night phone call he received.

In that incident, Castano told her he had to go pick up a friend, then left to get into his car, according to a Salem police report. When she went out to follow him in her own car, he went back into the house.

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