Police investigating a Maryland man’s bloody death say that it was his wife who caused his fatal injuries by shoving him to the ground and beating him with a cane. Gail Joy D’Anthony, 76, who court records note weighs 90 pounds and stands 4 feet, 10 inches, is charged with both first- and second-degree murder.
According to Carroll County prosecutors, police and EMS in the city of Westminster first responded on the evening of March 1 to a home on the 300 block of Royer Road regarding reports of someone in cardiac arrest. EMS tried saving the victim, John D’Anthony III, 72, but could not.
An examination soon revealed numerous injuries inconsistent with natural death, officials said.
“The results of the ME’s autopsy confirmed that Mr. D’Anthony suffered extensive injuries, including blunt force injuries throughout his body, including, but not limited to, lacerations to his mouth, a broken neck, a broken right rib, two black eyes, and large contusions to his hands and forearms,” authorities said. “Ultimately, the ME found these injuries inconsistent with a single fall or otherwise natural death and ruled it a homicide.”
Carroll County Sheriff’s Office investigators were asked on May 24 to continue the investigation.
Investigators obtained evidence from the home, which included pants and boots that Gail D’Anthony had been wearing on March 1, documents said. These had suspected blood spatter on them, according to authorities.
This evidence was consistent with the blunt force injuries that John D’Anthony sustained and was consistent with him dying from homicide, investigators said.
A witness soon came forward with information that authorities said was consistent with the victim’s injuries.
Detectives in June made contact with a witness who said that Gail D’Anthony allegedly described killing her husband John. First, she allegedly pushed him to the ground, where he hit his head on the floor.
“She then left the room and returned with a cane, which she used to bludgeon John on the head, and then used the cane to prevent him from getting up,” police said. “Gail D’Anthony entered and exited the room several times, eventually finding her husband unresponsive. She then called 911 for assistance.”
That story matched the evidence at the scene, authorities said. Detectives obtained the arrest warrant against Gail D’Anthony. She was arrested on Wednesday and has no attorney of record.
“This arrest and prosecution were the result of much sweat and shoe leather on the part of folks at both the Sheriff’s and State’s Attorney’s Offices, especially Detective Ashley Owens and Assistant State’s Attorneys Amy Ocampo and Connie Yarborough,” Carroll County State’s Attorney Haven Shoemaker said. “All of us in law enforcement in Carroll are committed to protecting vulnerable victims of domestic violence, no matter how young or old.”
Note: We added some information from documents.
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