, Salem, MA

Local News

November 23, 2013

Documents released in Danvers teacher's death

Police: Note reading 'I hate you all' found next to teacher's body


At the police station, police looked through Chism’s backpack and found a blood-stained box cutter. Asked where the blood had come from, Chism said, “The girl.”

Chism was also carrying Ritzer’s credit cards and two driver’s licenses in her name. He said he had found them at a Stop & Shop in Danvers, then later said he’d taken them from her car, according to the documents.

Chism was also carrying a pair of women’s underwear, believed to be Ritzer’s.

He was handed over to Danvers police and arrested on a murder charge.

Hours later, Ritzer’s body was found.

The gloves Chism had been seen donning in surveillance video were nearby, now soaked in blood.

And there was the note, folded and left next to Ritzer’s body.

Investigators are still awaiting the conclusion of the medical examiner as to the precise cause of Ritzer’s death.

Chism remains in custody, and is being held in a Department of Youth Services secure facility without bail.

He is expected to be arraigned in Salem Superior Court on Dec. 4.

Prosecutors said they expect to try all three charges in Superior Court. The aggravated rape and armed robbery charges were brought under the state’s youthful offender statute, which allows them to be tried either in juvenile or superior court.

The search by police of Chism’s home led to the seizure of a computer, two memory cards and two USB drives, as well as some papers. The contents of those items was not detailed.

Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, via email at or on Twitter @SNJulieManganis.

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