WORCESTER — Christopher Fletcher, 50, has been charged with the 1986 murder of Peggy Sue Calvillo, the result of dogged work by investigators and advances in forensic science, according to Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.
“Detectives should be praised for keeping this decades-old case alive and helping to provide justice and closure to the family of a young mother whose only mistake was being in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Mr. Early said.
DNA evidence had excluded Mr. Fletcher as a suspect in 1995, but investigators re-submitted some of the physical evidence for further testing and his DNA was found last year to be a match for evidence found on the body of the 24-year-old Fitchburg woman.
Mr. Fletcher, who is serving a life sentence without parole for the 1995 murder of Elizabeth Salsbury of Lunenburg, was indicted by a grand jury last month on charges of murder, aggravated rape, kidnapping and assault and battery with a
dangerous weapon in connection with the slaying of Mrs. Calvillo.
Assistant District Attorney Lisa Casella outlined the case against Mr. Fletcher at his arraignment today in Superior Court before Judge Janet Kenton-Walker. The defendant pleaded not guilty to all charges and the case was continued to Feb. 9. He is being held without bail.
Mrs. Calvillo’s partially clothed body was found under power lines on Old Turnpike Road in Lancaster on Dec. 6, 1986. After being arrested for Mrs. Salsbury’s murder, Mr. Fletcher told investigators that he accidentally hit Mrs. Calvillo with his car as she walked along Route 12 in Sterling. He said he then put her in his vehicle and drove to a secluded area where he raped her and left her to die.
Mr. Early praised investigators from the State Police Detective Unit assigned to the District Attorney’s office as well as Worcester Police for their relentless work on the case.