Suspect in death of social worker due in court

“It’s a large, extended family throughout central Vermont“, Scott said.


A Vermont woman is due in court to answer a first-degree murder charge in the shooting death of a social worker who police say was killed because the suspect was upset at losing custody of her 9-year-old daughter.

Police believe that before killing the 48-year-old Sobel, Herring killed three relatives in the adjoining town of Berlin.

Shumlin says at a news conference Saturday that the three victims found Saturday were an aunt and two cousins of 40-year-old Jody Herring, who has been arrested on a murder charge in Lara Sobel’s death.

But Sorrell says his office is asking that it be held Monday in Barre, not far from where police say Herring shot and killed Department for Children and Families social worker Lara Sobel on Friday as the woman left work.

Jody Herring has been charged in the shooting death of Sobel on Friday. Police said at least two of the women appeared to have been shot.

On Sunday, about 300 people remembered Sobel by marching to the parking lot outside the regional office of the Department for Children and Families where Sobel was killed. She was scheduled to be arraigned on Monday, police said.

“We know that the incidents were horrific and absolutely heartbreaking”, the governor said after returning early from vacation in Nova Scotia.

Shumlin assured state workers and families that Herring’s arrest ended any threat to others and that the care of Vermont’s “most vulnerable children” remains a priority.

Vermont police are investigating three deaths at a home in Berlin.

Cindy Walcott, DCF deputy commissioner, said that over the weekend, she has been thinking there would be no way to go forward, but she found support from the people she and the other social workers have helped overcome obstacles.

The chief wouldn’t comment on what may have triggered Herring to act on Friday, weeks after losing custody of her daughter. “She had been providing public service for children and families for more than 14 years”.


Sobel handled the case in which Herring lost custody of her 9-year-old daughter.

Joe Faryniarz left and Tiertza Leah Schwartz cousins of slain Vermont social worker Lara Sobel lead a procession in her memory on Aug. 9 in Barre. Authorities believe three other apparent murders in Central Vermont are all connected