A former New Hampshire prison inmate arrested June 5 on a warrant for second degree murder was not a fugitive when he was picked up in Pace last week by Santa Rosa deputies.
Peter Hinckley, assistant attorney general
Criminal Justice Bureau, New Hampshire Department of Justice, says his office knew where Thomas Bradford Milton, 30, was living. Milton registered with the Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Department as required on April 1 of this year.
Now Milton sits in the county jail, awaiting extradition back to New Hampshire where he will enter his plea in not only the reckless second-degree murder charge, but two additional charges of falsifying physical evidence and hindering prosecution.
Hinckley says Milton's charges sprang from an incident that occurred while Milton was still in custody at the New Hampshire state prison in Concord in 2010. He is accused of repeatedly kicking 44-year-old Anthony Renzzulla in the head while the man lie unconscious. Hinckley says Renzzulla was in a coma until November 2011, when he died from his injuries. After the medical examiner ruled his death a homicide, the State moved forward with the reckless second-degree murder charges.
The Concord Monitor newspaper covered this story Friday. Reporter Tricia L. Nadolny says this is the second time Milton faced charges in this crime, explaining in her article, "About a year after the incident, as Renzzulla lay unresponsive in a Greenfield rehabilitation center, Milton and another man were charged with attempted murder and a string of other assault charges.
But a county prosecutor, anticipating that Renzzulla would die from his injuries, soon after asked a judge to continue their cases, citing the possibility of murder charges being filed.
"That prosecutor dropped the charges against Milton and William Edic in May 2012 – about six months after Renzzulla died – after being encouraged to do so by the attorney general’s office. At the time, officials wouldn’t say whether the decision was made because murder charges were expected.
"Yesterday, Hinckley again declined to say why the first round of charges were dropped or to describe what new information makes the second-degree murder charge possible now, when it wasn’t immediately possible after Renzzulla died.
"He said the case is still under investigation but declined to comment on whether charges could be filed against 30-year-old Edic, who is incarcerated at the state prison."
Hinckley did confirm to the Press Gazette that no other people had been charged yet in this case.
Nadolny's article says Milton was serving a two to five year sentence for arson, finishing that sentence in May 2011, but was arraigned on the same day he was released, on the original murder and assault charges stemming from the death of Renzzulla.
A third man reportedly pleaded guilty to falsifying physical evidence after he allegedly helped clean up the blood in the attack of the victim - a charge Milton is also facing for the same reasons, according to Hinckley.
The prosecutor says he believes Milton has waived extradition, something Santa Rosa Sheriff's Spokesman Deputy Rich Aloy confirms. It is unknown when Milton will actually leave Santa Rosa County.