The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Community News Network

December 7, 2013

Newlyweds charged with Craigslist murder

Police investigate other possible killings tied to suspects

SUNBURY, Pa. — Authorities said Saturday they’re investigating possible other murders by a young married couple charged with luring a central Pennsylvania man to his death with an adult companionship ad on Craigslist.

Elytte Barbour, 22, and his wife of seven weeks, Miranda  Barbour, 18, recent residents of nearby Selinsgrove, Pa., were arrested this week for the stabbing death of Troy LaFerrara, 42, of Port Trevorton, Pa., a month ago and dumping his body in an alley here, said Sunbury Police Chief Steve Mazzeo.

Police said Elytte Barbour confessed the couple had been planning a thrill killing for some time with adult companionship ads for wealthy men on Craigslist but couldn’t pull it off until the encounter with LaFerrara.

A police affidavit in the case said Elytte Barbour told investigators he hid under a blanket in the backseat of the couple's SUV when they picked up LaFerrara at a Selinsgrove mall Nov. 11, driving him to an isolated location in Sunbury. Barbour said he then wrapped a cord around the unsuspecting victim’s neck to restrain him while his wife stabbed him 20 times with a knife and took his wallet.

Afterward, Barbour told investigators, they dumped LaFerrara’s body in a dark alleyway, purchased cleaning materials to remove blood stains from the SUV, and spent the rest of the night celebrating Barbour’s birthday at a strip club in the state capital of Harrisburg.

The murder went unsolved for more than three weeks, but investigators eventually traced the last call received on the victim’s cellphone to Miranda Barbour’s cellphone. She was charged with LaBerrara’s death Wednesday. Her husband was arrested and charged on Friday.

Police said Miranda Barbour is the mother of an 18-month-old child, and that Elytte Barbour told investigators the biological father had died before the couple moved to central Pennsylvania from North Carolina.

Authorities said they are investigating the circumstances of that death as well as any other unsolved murder cases that may be linked to the couple.

Following his wife's arrest, Elytte Barbour told The Daily Item of Sunbury that Miranda Barbour, whom he married Oct. 22, regularly hired herself out as a "companion" to men she met on various websites, a business venture he said he supported because it didn't involve sexual contact.

Barbour said his wife made anywhere from $50 to $850 by meeting with men for such activities as having dinner together or walking around a mall. The ads she placed on websites including Craigslist all said upfront that sex was not part of the deal, he said.

"She is not a prostitute," he said. "What she does is meet men who have broken marriages or have no one in their lives, and she meets with them and has delightful conversation."

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Details for this story were provided by The Daily Item of Sunbury, Pa.

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