Prosecutors say two men accused of murdering a New Windsor woman lured her to a house where one of them strangled her and slit her throat before they dumped her body in a wooded area more than 6 miles away.
Bret Michael Wheeler, 25, of the 2000 block of Dennings Road in New Windsor, and Robert Theodore Bosley, 38, an inmate who was on work release at the time of the killing, each face one count of first-degree murder in the death of Kandi Lynn Gerber, 35, who was also living at the Dennings Road address.
Circuit Court Chief state's attorney Allan Culver called it a "planned, vicious and brutal homicide" at a bail review hearing Wednesday morning in Carroll County District Court.
At the hearing, Culver told District Court Judge Brian Green that Wheeler — who was dating the victim — convinced Gerber to come to the Dennings Road address while he kept others away, then Bosley allegedly strangled Gerber before cutting her throat with a sharp-edged object.
Culver said Gerber had previously contacted law enforcement and told them Bosley had gone to Ocean City while he was supposed to be at his job on work release, providing a motive for Bosley.
Green ordered that both Wheeler and Bosley continue to be held at the Carroll County Detention Center without bond.
Carroll County Sheriff's Office deputies responded to the 2000 block of Dennings Road at about 5:21 p.m. Monday after occupants at the residence called the agency and reported that they had returned to the house, which was unoccupied at the time, and found blood in the basement. Those occupants are not believed to be involved in the homicide, according to police.
A pair of witnesses told police that they had been at the residence with Bosley, Gerber and Wheeler when they were approached by the two men and told to leave with a 10-year-old child who was also at the house. Wheeler followed the two witnesses and the child to a convenience store, leaving Gerber and Bosley at the house, according to a statement of charges.
Once the witnesses and child were at the store, Wheeler returned to the residence, according to the statement.
When the witnesses and child returned after about 45 minutes, they found Bosley and Wheeler, but Gerber was not at the house, according to the statement. The two witnesses left briefly, and when they returned Wheeler and Bosley were gone, but the 10-year-old child was at the house.
The two witnesses and child tried to find Gerber and called her phone. They found it in the basement, on the floor, next to a large pool of blood, according to the statement. They then called police.
The occupants told police a fight might have broken out between Bosley, Wheeler and Gerber. Wheeler and Bosley returned to the residence, but the two fled in a Nissan truck once they heard law enforcement had been contacted, according to police.
Witnesses told police they saw blood in the back of the truck, according to the statement.
Another witness also called police and said he believed he knew where Gerber's body was and that Bosley and Wheeler were at a residence in the 700 block of S. Springdale Road in New Windsor. Deputies responded to the location and found a 1985 Nissan truck, occupied by Wheeler and Bosley, and saw blood in the truck's bed, according to the statement.
Deputies detained them at 6:29 p.m. Monday, according to police.
The third witness told police that Bosley started contacting him at about 4 p.m. and asked him to meet the two at Dennings Road and then South Springdale Road. When the witness met them at South Springdale Road he saw blood in their truck, and Wheeler told him that Bosley slit Gerber's throat, according to the statement.
Bosley then told the witness that Gerber was dead and he had dumped the body near the end of a road. Bosley asked the witness to dispose of his and Wheeler's clothes, but the witness declined and left, according to the statement.
That witness told police that it appeared that Bosley and Wheeler had taken showers at the South Springdale residence, according to the statement.
Gerber was found dead at about 8:15 p.m. Monday near the intersection of Old Washington and Muller roads in Westminster with a neck laceration, according to charging documents.
Gerber's body was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner's Office in Baltimore for an autopsy to determine an official cause of death.
Bosley had been serving a six-month sentence at the Detention Center for a second-degree assault charge stemming from a July 2015 incident. He lived at the Dennings Road residence before his incarceration, according to a Sheriff's Office news release. He was out on work release and was not due to return to the jail until 9:30 p.m. the night of the killing, according to the Sheriff's Office.
Anyone with information about the homicide is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office at 410-386-5900 or the anonymous TIPS hotline at 888-399-TIPP.
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