Vt. woman pleads not guilty in boyfriend's stabbing death - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. woman pleads not guilty in boyfriend's stabbing death

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Jeanette Maxfield Jeanette Maxfield
Christopher Cafferky-File photo Christopher Cafferky-File photo

Jeanette Maxfield, 23, of Hyde Park, was charged Tuesday with second-degree murder for the death of her boyfriend, Chris Cafferky, 48.

Police believe Maxfield stabbed Cafferky in his Hyde Park home early Monday after an argument over liquor. Police say Maxfield called 911, telling the operator she blacked out and when she woke up, her boyfriend was dead. Police arrived to find Cafferky's body in the living room.

"At that time, Ms. Maxfield had blood on her body. They were able to obtain some clothing that Ms. Maxfield had worn earlier in the day that was also covered in blood," Lamoille County Deputy Prosecutor Todd Shove said.

The state's attorney argued Maxfield should be held without bail and read in court a portion of Maxfield's interview with police after she was taken into custody.

"'I'm so terribly afraid that I was, it was me that killed him. But it wasn't me, it was somebody else in my head. I want to know it was me. I don't know how I could end somebody's life,'" Shove read.

Maxfield continued, telling police they should take her to jail because if she killed Cafferky, she could do it to anybody. But her attorney, David Sleigh, says none of the statements provided explained how Cafferky died or who did it.

"Everything that she said was contingent. I don't think that rises to the level of the most persuasive evidence that I've seen," Sleigh said.

Cafferky met with Channel 3's Jennifer Reading last spring. The former inmate served time for a third DUI offense. But once he got out, Cafferky blew the whistle in a WCAX report on a corrections guard who came to his Hyde Park home to buy steroids. Cafferky recorded the transaction on his cellphone.

Back in court, the judge agreed with the prosecutor and ordered Maxfield held without bail. The judge also ordered a mental evaluation for Maxfield.

"I would instruct my client not to participate in a screening at this point," Sleigh said.

Sleigh says Vermont's mental health system is broken. Maxfield told police she was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder at the Brattleboro Retreat in 2013.

"To turn somebody over for a screening for an afternoon to come up with some kind of conclusions is at this point folly and, I think, potentially dangerous," Sleigh said.

Cafferky's family and Maxfield's parents were also in court Tuesday. Both declined to comment. Maxfield is expected back in court on Feb. 27.

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