Police investigate death of Vermont prison inmate being held on murder charges


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SPRINGFIELD, Vermont — Vermont State Police detectives are investigating the death of an inmate at the Southern State Correctional Facility in Springfield.

The death of 71-year-old Sylvester Labartino, of Hubbardton, was reported at about 9:35 p.m. Wednesday.

Labartino was awaiting trial for the Feb. 12 killings of Christopher and Shane Plummer in the town of Hubbardton. The Plummers were a father and son team of electricians who had been working at Labartino's rented home.

Police say Labartino had been recently diagnosed with a serious medical condition and had a history of other debilitating medical disorders. He was admitted to the prison infirmary on Aug. 20.

His death appears to have been due to natural causes, but the investigation is continuing.

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