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California Man Allegedly Killed and Attempted to Dismember Man in Motel Room After ‘Date Night’ Went Wrong

Hunter O. Fulton via Laramie Police Department.

Hunter O. Fulton via Laramie Police Department.

A 29-year-old California man was locked up by authorities in Wyoming after he allegedly killed and attempted to dismember the body of a man he claimed tried to rape his girlfriend last month, authorities say. Hunter O. Fulton was taken into custody last week and charged with one count each of second-degree murder and mutilation of a dead body.

According to a press release from the Laramie Police Department, Fulton was arrested on June 29 following an investigation into the whereabouts of an adult male who was reported missing on June 27.

In a sworn affidavit obtained by the Laramie Boomerang, police say the gruesome slaying began with Fulton and his girlfriend going out in downtown Laramie for a “date night” on the evening of June 24 and ended with the victim, identified in the document as “M.T.C.,” being fatally shot and in the couple’s hotel room.

Fulton and his girlfriend, whose identity was not reported, were allegedly “hanging out” at Copper’s Bar & Liquor Store on 3rd Street when M.T.C. attempted to make a “sexual pass” at Fulton’s girlfriend, the woman reportedly told police. Fulton confronted the man, who reportedly apologized and bought them drinks. The couple reportedly left the bar and returned to their room at the Gas Lite Motel and did an unknown amount of cocaine.

The girlfriend reportedly told police that in the early morning hours of June 25, Fulton left the room but failed to close the door. That’s when M.T.C. allegedly entered the motel room and attempted to rape Fulton’s girlfriend at knifepoint, according to the affidavit. Fulton allegedly returned to the room a short while later, and he and M.T.C. fought before Fulton allegedly shot and killed M.T.C., the girlfriend reportedly told investigators.

Fulton’s girlfriend reportedly returned to California on the afternoon of June 25, but Fulton stayed behind with M.T.C.’s body. Deputies on June 29 reportedly found Fulton sitting in his running truck in front of the Gas Lite Motel. Investigators reportedly said that he confessed to killing M.T.C., claiming he shot the man to protect his girlfriend.

“If your girlfriend would have gotten raped, you would have killed him too,” Fulton reportedly told officers at the scene. He also allegedly told an officer that they would find “everything you need inside the room.”

True to his word, investigators searched the room and reportedly found M.T.C.’s body in the bathtub. Multiple cuts had been made to the torso of the body, and a saw was recovered from next to the body, the affidavit report stated. A medical examiner performed an autopsy and reportedly determined that M.T.C.’s manner of death was a homicide and the cause of death was a gunshot wound. The torso wounds were determined to have occurred post-mortem.

Police subsequently discovered that Fulton purchased several new saws and a box of garbage bags from a local hardware store on June 25.

The day after M.T.C. was reported missing, police put out a notice seeking public assistance in locating Matthew Caggiano, who was last seen on June 25.  The department on June 30 updated the missing person bulletin to say that Caggiano had been located. The update was posted seven minutes before Fulton’s arrest was announced. The department did not immediately respond to a message from Law&Crime seeking additional information.

[image via Laramie Police Department]

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Jerry Lambe is a journalist at Law&Crime. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York Law School and previously worked in financial securities compliance and Civil Rights employment law.