Girlfriend of murder suspect arrested in California

Photo courtesy of Laramie Police Department Facebook

LARAMIE — Laramie police have confirmed the murder of a missing local man while also announcing the arrest of a second person alleged to have been involved in killing him. 

Erin B. Wade, 25, was arrested Tuesday in San Joaquin County, California, on suspicion of second-degree murder in the death of 27-year-old Mathew Caggiano, the Laramie Police Department announced in a late Wednesday afternoon press release. 

Caggiano was reported missing June 27, and his body found two days later in the bathtub of a room at the Gas Lite Motel on 3rd Street in Laramie. 

His remains were discovered by police when they arrested Wade’s boyfriend, Hunter O. Fulton, 29, who was apprehended sitting in his running vehicle in the motel’s parking lot, according to court records. 

He told officers that if they had arrived any later, he would have been gone. He also told officers they would “find everything you need inside the room,” according to an affidavit of probable cause written by LPD Detective Matthew Leibovitz. 

When police searched the motel room, they found Caggiano’s body in the bathtub with cuts to his torso, the affidavit says. There also was a saw nearby, and it was later determined Fulton had bought multiple saws and a box of trash bags from a local hardware store June 25, which also was the day Caggiano was last seen. 

Wade had returned to California before police caught up with the couple. 

Prior to her arrest, she told police that she and Fulton were “hanging out” with Caggiano at a bar when he made a pass at her. He then apologized and bought Fulton and Wade drinks. 

The affidavit says that Wade told police that sometime after she and Fulton returned to their motel room, they did some cocaine. Then at some point later, she claimed Caggiano came into the room after Fulton had stepped out and attempted to sexually assault her. 

During his arrest, Fulton told police, “If your girlfriend would have gotten raped you would have killed him too,” according to Leibovitz’s affidavit. 

He also said they would “find everything you need inside the room.”

That the couple would claim Caggiano attempted to assault Wade is “completely” unbelievable, said Michael Sisneros, a friend who worked with Caggiano. To claim he would be capable of doing something like that “is totally out of character,” he said. 

“He was my working partner. He was my partner, man,” Sisneros said. “This is surreal. Every time I go to the job site, I go, ‘Man, I wish Matt was here.’ He was such a good guy.” 

He said the Caggiano he knew was someone who could make most days better. 

“He laughed, he joked and was never down, and he was always smiling,” he said. “Everybody loved Matt.” 

Fulton is being held in the Albany County Detention Center on $1 million bond facing charges of second-degree murder, mutilation of dead human bodies, possession of a deadly weapon with unlawful attempt and aggravated assault and battery. 

In addition to the murder charge, Wade also was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit mutilation of dead bodies and accessory after the fact. 

Sisneros said he still has trouble processing the reality of what happened to his friend and working partner, and that “it came out of nowhere. … I hope the DA and the police get justice for Matt and his family. He didn’t deserve that.”