Mary L. Stetson was murdered and dismembered by Vaclav Plch, The Last 24 examines this case that shocked the community.
July 18, 1999, in Manchester, New Hampshire, and Stetson, 40, left her kids with a neighbor to head out for a night out. She went to Flo’s Bar downtown and was never seen alive again.
Two days later her torso was found in the Piscataquog River and police began an intensive murder investigation. The case was on the verge of becoming a little cold when Donna Plch came forward to report her ex-husband, Vaclav Plch, as a possible suspect. The pair had stayed in contact after they divorced and she remembered him once say he would cut up anyone who did him wrong.
She also noticed that in his apartment a large piece of carpet had been cut out and her gut instinct was that something bad had happened there. When police arrested Plch and searched his home, they found blood splatter in his bedroom matching Stetson’s.
Detectives believe that Stetson went home with Plch but perhaps refused his sexual advances, leading him to stab her to death in a frenzied attack. His defense claimed he’d passed out after taking a couple of pills Stetson gave him, and proposed that someone else might have followed the pair and killed Stetson whilst Plch was unconscious.
At his trial Plch told the court that he woke up to find Stetson dead and then decided to cut her up. Sawing off her head, arms and legs, before wrapping the parts in brown paper and trash bags.
The jury took just four hours to come to their decision and find him guilty of first-degree murder, with one member describing how they tried to blot out the grisly nature of the crime and concentrate on the facts and evidence.
In July 2013, 40-year-old Plch was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole.
The Last 24: Deadly Currents airs at 8:00 PM on Investigation Discovery.