COPY-Step-daughter extradited, charged in Luttrell murder-for-hire - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

COPY-Step-daughter extradited, charged in Luttrell murder-for-hire

The step-daughter of a Caddo Parish man killed in a murder-for-hire plot is now back in Louisiana, charged with murder in connection with the case.

Ernest Luttrell was found shot to death inside his residence in the 12200 block of Greenwood-Springridge Rd. in Keithville in July 2010. His wife, Loretta Luttrell, was charged with first degree murder in the case, accused of hiring a Caddo Parish couple to kill him. The 71-year-old was found incompetent to stand trial in February.

Tina Vanmoerkeque and Erick Crain were charged as co-conspirators in the death of Ernest Luttrell. Both have since pled guilty to murder, received life sentences and agreed to testify against all remaining defendants.

Passaniti was arrested on March 22 by the San Antonio Police Department on a bench warrant as a result of a secret indictment handed down by a Caddo Parish Grand Jury. She refused to waive her right to extradition. It took 8 weeks for a Governor's Warrant to be executed in order to return Passaniti to Louisiana to formally face the charges.

According to the Caddo Parish Sheriff's Office, documents recovered in the initial investigation led investigators to evaluate Passaniti's participation and involvement in the manipulation of Ernest Luttrell's finances prior to and after his death.

Passaniti's bond has been set at $500,277 on the murder charge and $50,277 on each of the remaining four charges. She is expected to appear before a judge in video court at CCC tomorrow morning. At that time, she will be arraigned, receive an attorney, and be given her next court date. 

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