Rhode Island couple charged in death of man under concrete

Jun 1, 2015, 2:30 PM
Steven Pietrowicz, Jr., center, of Burrillville, R.I., is arraigned on a murder charge in Providenc...
Steven Pietrowicz, Jr., center, of Burrillville, R.I., is arraigned on a murder charge in Providence District Court in Providence, R.I., for the murder of Domingo Ortiz of Worcester, Mass., Monday, June 1, 2015. Pietrowicz is one of two people facing murder charges in the death of Ortiz. The body of Ortiz was found Friday, May 29 under newly laid concrete beneath an outside deck of a house in Burrillville, R.I.,where Pietrowicz and Michelle Morin of Worcester, Mass. lived. He had been missing since May 5, when he was last seen at the house in Burrillville. Morin was arrested in Worcester, Mass., late Saturday. (Mary Murphy/Providence Journal via AP, Pool)
(Mary Murphy/Providence Journal via AP, Pool)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island couple was ordered held without bail Monday in the killing of a Massachusetts man whose body was found under newly poured concrete at the couple’s home nearly a month after he went missing.

Steven Pietrowicz, 39, and Michelle Morin, 40, were arraigned on charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and obstruction of a police officer. A bail hearing was scheduled for June 15.

Morin was arrested late Saturday in Worcester, Massachusetts, where she and Pietrowicz previously lived. She waived extradition Monday and agreed to be returned to Rhode Island to face charges.

Pietrowicz was already in custody on charges of domestic assault.

The body of 60-year-old Domingo Ortiz, of Worcester, was found Friday beneath a newly constructed deck adjacent to the home Pietrowicz and Morin were renting. The body was located in a four-to-five-foot hole covered by large rocks and a layer of concrete, police said.

Ortiz had been beaten with an object and his legs may have been tied up, police said. An autopsy had not been completed Monday.

Ortiz had been missing since May 5 and was last seen getting into the couple’s car that day in Worcester, police said.

Pietrowicz and Morin told police they’d had an argument with Ortiz that evening but said that he’d left the home the morning of May 6.

An initial search of the couple’s home turned up broken furniture and evidence of cleaning with a strong bleach product, police said.

Police have not offered a motive for the killing.

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Rhode Island couple charged in death of man under concrete