A former River Grove woman pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree murder in the death of her boyfriend in 2018 at the former Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s office announced Nov. 30.
Vulpitta entered her plea before Judge Brian Telander, who sentenced her to 15 years in prison. She has been held at the DuPage County jail on a $2 million bond since her arrest, according to a news release.
When St. Charles police responded to a call for medical assistance about 9:30 p.m. Sept. 6, 2018, medics found Hagen unresponsive in the west parking lot. He had bruising and tire marks across his chest consistent with being run over with a vehicle, according to the release.
A St. Charles police investigation led to Vupitta’s arrest.
Vulpitta and Hagen were staying at Pheasant Run Resort and at some point that evening they had an argument that turned physical, according to the release.
Vulpitta left the room and went to the parking lot, followed by Hagen. While in the parking lot, Vulpitta entered the victim’s vehicle and drove over him with it.
“This afternoon, Kathleen Vulpitta took responsibility for the death of Earl Hagen Jr.,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said in the release. “Earl’s tragic death cannot be undone and I wish his surviving family and friends strength as they continue their lives without the love and support they once enjoyed from Earl. I thank assistant state’s attorneys Bethany Jackson, Grace Barsanti and Sean Kinsella for their efforts in preparing a strong prosecution that led to today’s guilty plea.”
At the time of her arrest, Berlin issued a statement about domestic violence.
“Domestic violence is a silent epidemic that claims millions of victims each and every year, sometimes with irreversible results, as alleged in this case. The true tragedy of domestic violence deaths is that they are 100% avoidable. Throughout the country, local social service programs offer assistance and guidance to people in an abusive relationship on how they can safely remove themselves. I offer my sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Earl Hagen on their loss,” Berlin said at the time.