Burrillville killing suspects plead not guilty

Michelle Morin (left) and Steven Pietrowicz (right) are charged in connection with the murder of Domingo Ortiz in Burrillville.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A man and a woman indicted by a grand jury for the killing of a man found under a cement slab at a Burrillville home have both pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Steven Pietrowicz and Michelle Morin were arraigned at Providence Superior Court Wednesday morning. Both were held without bail.

Police say the two killed Domingo Ortiz and buried his body. It was discovered at the home in May. “Charges against Pietrowicz and Morin stem from each of them beating Ortiz with their hands — and a club — and at times, Ortiz’s legs were tied while he was being beaten,” said Col. Stephen Lynch told reporters at a news conference shortly after the discovery.

“Investigators located broken furniture, blood evidence, and evidence of cleaning with a strong product throughout the house,” said Lynch.

Domingo Ortiz
Domingo Ortiz

The situation is up in the air for two other suspects in Ortiz’s killing. The Providence County Grand Jury indicted Corey Bickhardt and Denise Walker. The Rhode Island Attorney General’s office said Pietrowicz, Morin and Bickhardt did the killing; Walker is charged with one count of failure to report a death.

Right now, Bickhardt is incarcerated in Pennsylvania on unrelated charges. No arraignment is scheduled yet for him in Rhode Island. His charges in this case include murder, assault with a dangerous weapon, and conspiracy, as well as failure to report a death.

Walker has been arrested by police in Pennsylvania, according to the attorney general’s office. A date has not been set for when she will be brought to Rhode Island for arraignment.

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