DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
VERMONT STATE POLICE
SHAFTSBURY HOMICIDE UPDATE
November 14, 2016 - Detectives from Troop C, Shaftsbury and the Major Crime Unit continue to investigate the incident below. At this time investigation has shown that Gardner had driven to the residence of Fitz on 11-11-16 and was reportedly upset with Fitz regarding Fitz's involvement with his (Gardner's) girlfriend.
The crime scene search team has completed their processing and documentation of the scene. Fitz was found lying on the ground outside of his residence and autopsy results confirmed that he died of a gunshot wound to his chest. Gardner was found sitting in the driver's seat of his truck and autopsy has confirmed that he died of a gunshot wound to the head, consistent with self-inflicted. A 30-30 rifle was recovered in the truck with Gardner's body. No weapons were found on Fitz or near his body.
Investigation to this point has shown that there were no other subjects involved in this matter.
The investigation will continue with forensic lab testing of evidence gathered at the scene to finalize the findings above.
No other information is available at this time.
Captain JP Sinclair
Chief Criminal Investigator-Major Crime Unit
Vermont State Police
INCIDENT: Fatal Shooting Investigation
TROOPER: Lt. Reg Trayah
DATE/TIME: 11-11-2016 / 1230 hrs
LOCATION – 665 Shaftsbury Hollow Road, Shaftsbury, VT
AGE: 38 years old
CITY, STATE OF RESIDENCE: Hoosick falls, NY
AGE: 28 years old
CITY, STATE OF RESIDENCE: Shaftsbury, VT
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT:
On November 11, 2016 at approximately 1230 the Vermont State Police were called to 655 Shaftsbury Hollow Road in Shaftsbury Vermont. Law Enforcement was notified that two deceased males were found on the property. One male was located in the front yard, deceased (Fitz) from an apparent gunshot wound. The second male was located in a truck and also appeared to have a gunshot wound (Gardner).
Preliminary Investigation at this time has revealed that this appears to be a homicide / suicide, however the final manners of death will be determined in conjunction with the OCME. There is no information at this time that there is a threat to the public.
Detectives from the Criminal Division, Major Crime Unit, Crime Scene Search Team, Bennington County Sheriff’s Department, and Bennington P.D. were called to assist in this investigation. Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Vermont State Police – Shaftsbury Barracks (802) 442-5421
Det. Lt. Reg Trayah
Vermont State Police
Bureau of Criminal Investigations
Troop - C
(802) 773-9101 - Work
(802) 558-5561 – Cell
(802) 250-4562 - Pager
Vermont State Police Public Information Officer