A Vermont man, who was facing charges for the alleged murder of his mother at sea as part of an elaborate plan to gain a multimillion-dollar inheritance, has passed away while awaiting trial, according to federal authorities on Thursday, Your Content has learned.
Nathan Carman, 29, had entered a plea of not guilty last year, denying the charges of fraud and first-degree murder in relation to the death of his mother, Linda Carman. The trial was scheduled to commence in October.
An indictment consisting of eight counts had also implicated Carman in the fatal shooting of his affluent grandfather, John Chakalos, in 2013.
However, Carman was not charged with his grandfather’s murder and had consistently maintained his innocence in both deaths.
The circumstances surrounding Carman’s death remain unclear, with no immediate cause disclosed.
The Vermont U.S. attorney’s office announced that Carman died in the custody of the U.S. Marshals, who oversee pre-trial detention, clarifying that the Marshals Service collaborates with state and local governments for detainee housing due to the absence of its own detention facilities.
Carman was discovered deceased by guards at a county jail in Keene, New Hampshire, around 2:30 a.m., where he had been the sole occupant of a cell.
Doug Losue, the superintendent of the Cheshire Corrections Department, reported that local police in Keene, situated near the Vermont state line, are currently investigating the death.
One of Carman’s attorneys, Martin Minnella, conveyed that his client had seemed “in good spirits” during their last conversation on Wednesday, expressing confidence in their defense strategy and the impending trial’s outcome.
In response to the news, Carman’s three surviving aunts, Chakalos’ daughters, issued a statement expressing deep sadness and requesting privacy to process the shocking information and its impact on the tragic events of recent years.
In September 2016, Carman organized a fishing trip with his mother, during which prosecutors claim he planned to kill her and stage an accident by reporting that their boat had sunk, resulting in his mother’s disappearance.
Eight days after departing from a Rhode Island marina, Carman was found adrift in an inflatable raft, while his mother’s body was never recovered. Carman vehemently denied the allegations of tampering with the boat to ensure its sinking.
Federal prosecutors allege that the deaths of Carman’s mother and grandfather were intended to secure his inheritance, estimated at $7 million, which consisted of Linda Carman’s share of her father’s estate.
The probate court in Connecticut is currently handling the inheritance matter, where Carman’s aunts have sought to prevent him from receiving any funds from his grandfather’s estate.
Attorneys Minnella and David Sullivan criticized the indictment, particularly the accusations regarding Carman’s involvement in his grandfather’s killing, emphasizing that no charges were ever filed against him for that crime.
Prosecutors argue that the inheritance scheme spanned nearly a decade, starting with Carman’s purchase of a rifle in New Hampshire, which they claim he used to shoot Chakalos in his Connecticut home on December 20, 2013.
Carman allegedly disposed of the hard drive of his own computer and the GPS unit in his truck following the incident.
Although Carman was the last person seen with his grandfather and owned a similar semi-automatic rifle, the firearm itself disappeared.
In 2014, the police in Windsor, Connecticut, drafted an arrest warrant charging Carman with his grandfather’s murder, but a state prosecutor declined to sign it, requesting additional information. No criminal charges were pursued until the federal indictment, according AP News.
After Chakalos’ death, Carman received $550,000