Murder victim had pleaded guilty of assault in child slapping ca - News, Weather & Sports

Murder victim had pleaded guilty of assault in child slapping case

Vernice Aniton (Source: family photo) Vernice Aniton (Source: family photo)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A house destroyed by fire in Louisville's Parkland neighborhood became a murder scene on Monday after an autopsy revealed a woman found dead inside the home was killed before the fire was set. The fire started around 5:00 Sunday morning.


A neighbor of murder victim Vernice Aniton, 64, said he installed three working smoke detectors inside the home. Larry Fugett said he never believed the fire killed Aniton and that he had a dream that his neighbor was murdered. 


"I don't know where it come from, but it woke me up this morning," Fugett said. "About three hours, later the homicide detectives come knocking on my door."


The entire house was engulfed in flames and even caught parts of the house next door on fire. 


Neighbor Alonzo Hearn said knowing this has turned into a homicide investigation is unsettling.


"Oh my God, it changes the whole thing, you know, that somebody can be less than two houses from you and to be murdered. That's hard to take in," Hearn said. "You know, you see it on TV because I watch a lot of forensic shows, but this brings it so close to home."


Louisville Metro Police detectives have no suspects in the case. The homicide unit has teamed up with the arson unit for a joint investigation.


This isn't the first time the victim has been in the news. In September, Vernice Aniton was charged with second degree criminal abuse after slapping a child at a daycare where she worked.  She pled down the charges to fourth degree assault and served 14 days in jail.


Anyone with information about her murder should call the anonymous police tip line at 502-574-LMPD. 


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