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Suspect's Mother Cleared in Death of Lawyer's Wife

October 29, 2005|From Associated Press

MARTINEZ, Calif. — Prosecutors on Friday dropped charges against the mother of a teenager accused of killing a prominent attorney's wife after she agreed to testify against her son.

Esther Fielding, 53, was being held in lieu of $500,000 bail on suspicion of being an accessory to murder. Her son, Scott Dyleski, 16, faces a first-degree murder charge in the death of his neighbor, Pamela Vitale.

Fielding appeared Friday afternoon in court, where prosecutors said she helped Dyleski destroy evidence. But prosecutor Harold Jewett agreed not to press charges when Fielding said she would testify truthfully.

Vitale was the wife of defense attorney and television commentator Daniel Horowitz. Vitale's body was found Oct. 15 by Horowitz in a mobile home on the Lafayette hilltop estate where the couple were building a home.

For The Record
Los Angeles Times Wednesday November 02, 2005 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 2 inches; 72 words Type of Material: Correction
Slaying case -- A headline in Saturday's California section mischaracterized an article about prosecutors dropping charges against the mother of a teenager accused of killing a prominent attorney's wife. The headline said: "Suspect's Mother Cleared in Death of Lawyer's Wife." As the article stated, prosecutors said Esther Fielding helped her son, Scott Dyleski, destroy evidence, but they agreed to drop the charges against her after she agreed to testify against her son.

That night, Dyleski called his mother, who told him to stay at his girlfriend's Walnut Creek house because police had blocked the road, according to an affidavit.

Investigators seized a duffel bag from a vehicle at Fielding's house that contained clothing and a glove, both with traces of blood, court documents said.

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