Pittsford man charged in death of girlfriend

Anthony Reynolds booking photo, taken May 19, 2019.

A late night out that led to a domestic dispute ended with police alleging a Pittsford man struck his girlfriend at her home in Proctor with his truck, causing her death.

State police were notified of a body found at 13 Market Street in Proctor at 4:52 a.m. on Saturday, May 18, and troopers from the Field Force Division, Major Crime Unit and Bureau of Criminal Investigations, were called to the location. According to the police report, investigators found Melanie Rooney, 31 of Proctor, in her driveway dead from what police reported as having been run over by a vehicle. Her official cause of death was body trauma from being crushed.

The follow-up investigation led police to her boyfriend, Anthony Reynolds, 48, whom police arrested on Saturday in connection with Rooney’s death.

Reynolds was held without bail until he was arraigned on Monday, May 20, in Rutland. He was charged with manslaughter, first degree aggravated domestic assault, second degree aggravated domestic assault with a prior conviction, grossly negligent operation of a vehicle, leaving the scene of a fatal crash and operating with a criminally suspended license.

In an affidavit filed after the arraignment, Vermont State Police Detective Sergeant Tyson Kinney said Reynolds told police that he and Rooney started dating in January, and during the evening prior to her death, a dispute occurred between the two in the city of Rutland.

Rooney initially told police that they drove back to Rooney’s house in Proctor after the argument and he returned to his house in Pittsford. Hours later, the affidavit states, Reynolds told officers he had not told the truth in the first interview and wanted to “come clean.”

Reynolds went on to tell police that he was kicked out of a bar due to an argument with a bouncer and got into a verbal argument with Rooney before they returned to her home.

Upon arriving, Reynolds said he went into Rooney’s house briefly before getting in his truck and driving away. He quickly realized he forgot his cell phone and turned around to get it.

Reynolds told police that when he returned to Rooney’s house he saw what he thought was a duffel bag laying in the driveway. Once he discovered the shape in the driveway was Rooney, he thought she was being dramatic and told her to get up. After he discovered she didn’t have a pulse and wasn’t breathing, he said he panicked and left.

According to the affidavit, at this time Reynolds believed it was him that struck Rooney due to the fact that he did not see any other vehicles and the short amount of time until he returned to the residence.

In court on Monday, May 20, Reynolds pled not guilty to all six charges and was held without bail, pending a trial. 

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