SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

November 9, 2012

Ronchi found guilty of first-degree murder

Judge imposes consecutive life sentences

(Continued)

Instead, he drove to Norwalk, Conn., abandoned his minivan, bought a bike and supplies with the cash he had on him, and began pedaling toward upstate New York, where his family owned a farm.

He acknowledged that he wanted to get away after the killings. And Swomley acknowledged it, as well. The defense argued to jurors that while Ronchi was capable of making decisions both before and after the stabbing, in the moment he committed the crime, he was not.

The defense had called in an expert to tell jurors that Ronchi suffered from anxiety, depression, Asperger’s syndrome and a series of other conditions, as well as a cyst on his brain’s frontal lobes that may have impaired his ability to control his impulses in that moment.

Ronchi told jurors that he and Galperina had been arguing over the new baby’s immunizations and about being able to introduce him to Ronchi’s older children when he announced he was leaving her, but would send money. He says she told him, “Don’t bother, it’s not yours.”

But Curran had laid out a case that showed Ronchi may have had it in mind to kill Galperina before he went to her apartment that Saturday night, after spending the earlier part of the evening with another woman, Susan Slowick.

Slowick testified that while their relationship was platonic, Ronchi had never mentioned having a girlfriend, never mind a girlfriend who was pregnant and about to give birth. DNA tests confirmed later that the baby was, in fact, his.

And there were the wills, one torn up, one tucked into a drawer, that indicated that Ronchi would not include the baby in a family trust fund worth at least $1 million. Instead, he would allocate one-quarter of his other assets to the baby “if and when” he was born. The wills had been written two days before the slaying. So had two postdated checks, one for the following year’s tuition for his children at Cape Ann Waldorf School and the other for $10,000 to his ex-wife.

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