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Raleigh woman sought new life before fatal shooting

Posted September 5, 2012

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— A woman who police say was gunned down last week by her husband had been "emerging from darkness" in the weeks prior to her death and had been looking forward to starting a new life with her 6-year-old son, according to those who knew her.

Agata Flipska Vellotti, 43, of Krakow, Poland, died Aug. 30 after her husband, Mario Vellotti, allegedly shot her in the parking lot of Meridian at Wakefield Apartments in north Raleigh.

According to court documents, the two were involved in a custody dispute, and Agata Vellotti had successfully sought a domestic violence protective order against him in recent months.

Agata Vellotti married her husband in 2005 and moved to the United States with him in 2007.

But she had moved out from their home, friends say, and had been working to support herself, partly by selling handmade clothing and crafts at a Chapel Hill cooperative.

"She was optimistic and full of hope," said Paula Maddocks, an emergency room nurse at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill, who co-chairs the cooperative, Womancraft Handcrafted Gifts.

Maddocks knew Agata Vellotti as a gifted artist who knitted and made handmade jewelry.

"The knitting was just perfect," Maddocks said. "The color selection was just beautiful."

Maddocks recently received a memorial letter written by a translator who came to know Agata Vellotti in recent months through the law firm representing her in the custody battle.

Woman sought new life before fatal shooting Woman sought new life before fatal shooting

The translator, Alexandra Lisowska, paints a dark life in which Agata Vellotti felt "invisible" and isolated, with "no church, no friends, no driver's license; not even a key to her home."

"Her world was (her son) Francesco, her crafts, her bedroom, her small neighborhood," according to the letter.

By July, Agata Vellotti had been able to get an apartment and had enrolled her son in a nearby school. She had just returned from walking him there on Thursday when she was shot.

"The Agata who had been so hidden from us for five years was humble, painfully shy," according to the letter. "In the last weeks of her life, she was almost joyful, perhaps for the first time in years. She was optimistic and full of hope."

Maddocks said the letter puts into context her first meeting with Agata Vellotti several weeks ago.

"She seemed very tense, almost that frightened-rabbit look," Maddocks said.

According to the letter, the couple's son is in protective custody, and Agata Vellotti's family hopes to bring him to Poland to live as soon as possible.

Wake Family Law Group, the firm that represented Agata Vellotti, is trying to raise money to make that happen. Donations can be made to Francesco's Fund, c/o Wake Family Law Group, 4350 Lassiter at North Hills Ave., Raleigh, N.C. 27609.

Meanwhile, Mario Vellotti, 64, is being held without bond in the Wake County jail.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • dollibug Sep 13, 2012

    Wake County has a HUGE room for improvement in the family courts and in the criminal courts as well....it is sad when INNOCENT people can get indicted, tried and convicted when there is NO EVIDENCE....or when INNOCENT people are forced to take a plea deal for something that they are not guilty of....perhaps it is TIME FOR REAL CHANGE IN WAKE COUNTY COURTS....someone who can keep up with what is going on....

  • wakecountykangaroocourt Sep 12, 2012

    changeyourownlife... have you ever been in a custody battle in wake county court? My husband has.. he doesn't even have so much as a speeding ticket.. he is still a weekend dad... I assure you he did not receive a fair trial. No man in wake county does.. NC Fathers on facebook and google kangaroo courts wake county. Read about what people go through...

  • ndadszucs Sep 6, 2012

    "I would also have encourage her to escape this man to have a better life." -charmcclainlovesdogs2

    Ummm, that's exactly what she did, was trying to do; for the child. And that's exactly when and why he killed her.

  • charmcclainlovesdogs2 Sep 6, 2012

    Cold hearted comments gatsby

    No one is being cold hearted. The truth hurts. Obviously, neither parent considered the child once. It does not matter what we say here. What about the parents role to their own child who no longer has his mother? If it was my love one, I would say the exact same thing. I would also have encourage her to escape this man to have a better life.

  • charmcclainlovesdogs2 Sep 6, 2012

    these stories that have come up in the last few weeks have gotten no sympathy from me except for an "Oh well"


    I agree with you. Desperate women will do this. Marry anyone and knowing nothing much about the man.

  • charmcclainlovesdogs2 Sep 6, 2012

    Would it be as funny

    No one on this board thinks this story is funny. How did you come up with that word? Just curious.

  • charmcclainlovesdogs2 Sep 6, 2012

    While the parents where in their hot disagreement and arguing, did they once think about their child? I guess not. Violence is ever where ones allowed it. If its around you, then YOU find a way out. There is a better life for YOU and your CHILDREN. May God continue to bless this child.

  • itsmyownopinion Sep 6, 2012

    I agree with Gatsby and PracticalMagick; most of the comments have been really disappointing and leaves me to wonder who I'm walking among.

  • PracticalMagick Sep 6, 2012

    Obamacare is back again: What are you smoking, and is it legal?

    A little kid just lost both of his parents...try and show a little compassion, huh? Would it be as funny if she had been your mother, sister, or daughter?

  • Gatsby Sep 6, 2012

    A young boy left motherless & fatherless...
    Cold hearted comments show a lack of respect for all involved.