Rachael DelTondo and Tyric Pugh murders: Does ice cream connect two Pe…
It was May 13, 2018 when 33-year-old teacher Rachael DelTondo went out for ice cream with friends.
“‘We’re goin’ to Hanks to get ice cream.’ Little did I know those were the last words from my baby,” Rachael’s mother Lisa DelTondo told “48 Hours” correspondent Erin Moriarty.
Rachael DelTondo’s friend Lauren Watkins was driving and says she dropped Rachael off at home after their trip to Hank’s Frozen Custard. Lauren said she made sure Rachael made it to her door before driving away. Less than four minutes later, Rachael was shot and killed. Rachael’s body was discovered at the foot of her driveway.
Rachael DelTondo was shot multiple times at the foot of her parents’ driveway in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, on May 13, 2018. She had just been dropped off by a friend a few minutes prior and there were no eyewitnesses to the murder. KDKA
Rachael’s parents, Lisa and Joe DelTondo closest believed Sheldon Jeter Jr. — then a 20-year-old former high school football star — was responsible for her death. According to his attorney Michael Santicola, Jeter and DelTondo’s relationship was more than a friendship.
“They had a relationship going on for quite some time,” says Santicola.
Sheldon Jeter’s uncle, Michael Moreland — who Jeter lived with — says he knew Sheldon was seeing someone older, but did not know who it was.
But Lisa DelTondo says there was nothing romantic between her daughter and Sheldon Jeter. She says Rachael was trying to help Jeter because she was a teacher, and that Jeter mistook her kindness as romantic love.
Murder of Pennsylvania teacher remains unsolved 16 photos
“He was obsessed with her,” DelTondo told “48 Hours” correspondent Erin Moriarty in “Who Killed Rachael DelTondo?” airing Saturday, December 11 at 10:01/9:01c on CBS and Paramount+.
Sheldon Jeter’s uncle says that Jeter was at home the night Rachael was killed.
“He was at home with my dad because he took care of my dad at nighttime,” said Moreland.
It was almost two years to the day after Rachael was killed, May 15, 2020, that another trip for ice cream ended in death. This time the victim was Tyric Pugh, whom Sheldon Jeter and Michael Moreland considered family. Pugh was with Jeter and Moreland at Bruster’s for ice cream earlier that day.
Once again Sheldon Jeter’s relationship with the victim put the attention back on him. Investigators were at his door the night Pugh was killed after they discovered Pugh’s driver’s license listed his address as the same residence where Jeter lived. Moreland confirmed that Pugh lived with them on and off.
Surveillance cameras captured Sheldon Jeter Jr. leaving home with Tyric Pugh, at 11:10 p.m. on May 15, 2020. Later, cameras captured Sheldon returning alone. Around the time Sheldon returned home alone, a motorist discovered Tyric’s body and called 911. Beaver County DAs Office
Jeter willingly spoke with investigators about his whereabouts the night Pugh was killed, but surveillance footage told a different story. Cameras captured Jeter and Tyric Pugh leaving home together and Jeter returning alone. A motorist discovered Pugh’s body and called 911. Like Rachael DelTondo, he had been shot multiple times.
Jeter spoke with investigators again the next day, this time at the police stop.
“It doesn’t look good for you. It doesn’t,” said the state police trooper interviewing Jeter.
During this interview, a search warrant was executed at Jeter’s house and a gun was found under his mattress.
“The state police crime lab examined the weapon and examined the evidence from the crime scene and determined in the report that that weapon fired the rounds responsible for Tyric Pugh’s death,” said investigative reporter and “48 Hours” consultant John Paul Vranesevich.
Sheldon Jeter Jr. was found guilty of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison for the death of Tyric Pugh. KDKA
Sheldon Jeter went on trial for the murder of Tyric Pugh in June 2021. He was found guilty of murdering his friend and is serving a life sentence.
“48 Hours” investigates murder of teacher 03:53
As for the Rachael DelTondo case, it has been reported that a Pennsylvania statewide grand jury has heard testimony involving Sheldon Jeter. When asked about a possible speculate or charge in the case, Beaver County District Attorney David Lozier would only say, “We’re pleased with the quality of the evidence that we have. And we’ll make an announcement when we believe we can win a case to the criminal standard of beyond reasonable doubt.”
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