Jurors have made a decision in the trial of Christopher Piantedosi, the man who was suspected of stabbing and killing North Reading native Kristen Pulisciano last year. Pulisciano was a graduate of North Reading High School.
Piantedosi, 40, of Methuen, was found guilty of murder by deliberate premeditation and extreme atrocity or cruelty and malicious destruction of property by a Middlesex Superior Court jury following an 11-day trial, Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan announced in a release today.
Middlesex Superior Court Judge Diane Kottmyer sentenced the defendant to life in prison without the possibility of parole on the charge of murder and 20 years probation on the charge of malicious destruction of property with the condition of no contact with the victim’s two children.
“This was a gruesome attack where the defendant killed Kristen Pulisciano, the mother of his children, by stabbing her 33 times in their daughter’s bedroom,” Ryan said. “Perpetrators of domestic violence seek to exert power and control over their victims. When this defendant saw that he was losing his control over the victim, he violently killed her. This is a tragic case and today, while we are pleased that justice was served, our thoughts are with the victim’s family, as they continue to mourn the loss of Kristen.”
According to authorities, at approximately 6:45pm on May 3, 2012 Burlington Police responded to 23 Forbes Avenue for a report of a stabbing. Upon arrival, officers located a female victim, evidencing obvious fatal stab wounds. The victim, Kristen Pulisciano, 38, a resident of 23 Forbes Avenue, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Burlington Police and the Massachusetts State Police assigned to the Middlesex District Attorney's Office launched an immediate investigation into the circumstances of the stabbing. The defendant, who had had a long-standing relationship with the victim, stabbed the victim inside her residence.
An autopsy by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (ME) determined the cause of death to be sharp force injuries to the head and chest and the manner of death homicide.
Through the course of the investigation, officials learned that the victim’s daughter was video chatting with a friend on her Ipad in her bedroom just before the murder. When the victim’s daughter heard the victim and defendant fighting, she left her bedroom and went into the living room. Her mother then ran into the daughter’s bedroom, and the defendant followed with a knife in his hand. The video chatting program was still open during this time, and the friend witnessed the violent attack by the defendant. The defendant broke open the bedroom door, pushed the victim onto the bed and began stabbing her over and over. The victim’s daughter attempted to stop the defendant, but she was unable to pull him off of her mother, so she fled the house and called police. The victim suffered 33 stab wounds.
The defendant fled the scene. An arrest warrant for murder was issued the morning of May 4, 2012 for Piantedosi. On May 4, 2012, Piantedosi turned himself into authorities at the Massachusetts State Police Barracks in Weston. He was arraigned May 7, 2012 and held without bail. He was indicted by a Middlesex Grand Jury on June 7, 2012.
The prosecutor assigned to the case was Assistant District Attorney Nicole Allain. The Victim Witness Advocate was Anne Foley. The paralegal was Stephanie Calnan.
According to the Herald, Defense attorney Michael Collora said before the trial he was “not going to dispute the evidence" but suggested his client did not have the "mental capacity and intent" to commit the crime.
Patch trial coverage:
Daughter Testifies in Piantedosi Murder Trial
Nephew Testifies Piantedosi Called Him Night of Murder
North Reading Remembers Kristen Pulisciano