Vigil planned for slain Vermont social worker

WCAX 3 News Veteran case worker Lara Sobel was gunned down outside a Department for Children and Families hearing Friday in Barre City, Vt. The cousins have been of their 40s, and the aunt in her 70s; the three have been killed earlier than Sobel’s life was taken, Shumlin stated.


The governor said the investigation into the deaths of Herring’s relatives was ongoing and he declined to release any additional information.

BARRE, Vt. (AP) – Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin says a woman who lost custody of her 9-year-old daughter is “the alleged perpetrator” in the deaths of three relatives.

Jody Herring is being charged with first-degree murder for allegedly killing three family members and a social worker after losing custody of her daughter.

“Lara was a lovely, attractive individual and she really, really cared about the kids, all the kids”, Joseph Faryniarz, the cousin of Sobel’s husband, said during the vigil that included a march ending at the spot where Sobel was shot and killed as she left work. All three victims are related to Jody Herring, now being held for the shooting death of a state social worker Friday afternoon. It wasn’t clear if she has a lawyer.

“This case is in the early states of investigation, to include exploring the connection with the homicide that occurred in Barre city yesterday afternoon”, state and local police said in a joint statement.

Shumlin ordered security to be reviewed at state buildings and said Department for Children and Families workers will make only emergency calls only accompanied by law enforcement over the weekend.

“The tragedy that has gripped our state … is vast”.

The DCI believes this is a single incident and is no indication of a broader threat to the agency, but as a precaution DCF employees are asked to only go on emergency calls.

Three bodies were found on Saturday morning at a home in Berlin, with police saying at least two appeared to have been shot.

He said it was his understanding following conversations with relatives that Herring’s father had been one of 16 siblings in a very large family.

The family said that it hopes that the tragedy “can create awareness of the dedicated professionals who devote so much of their energy to ensuring the welfare of children”.

Barre Police Chief Tim Bombardier said Sunday he doesn’t expect any more bodies will be found in relation to the case. A home telephone number listed for her had been disconnected.

Sobel’s co-workers and members of the Vermont State Employees Association planned to hold a vigil Sunday. “They do the work out of their dedication to the children and families of this great state”.

She said her mother had received a call from Jody Herring on Friday morning accusing her of calling children’s services.


“[We] firmly believe that this was an isolated attack based upon the person we have in custody, who is the alleged perpetrator of these crimes”, he said. Following the investigation, Vermont handed a regulation designed to enhance communications between the division, regulation enforcement and the courts.

Jody Herring allegedly murders social worker suspect in family killing