Two Cody, Wyo., teenagers have been arrested in connection with a triple homicide at a home in Clark, a rural community in northwest Wyoming near the Montana border.

Park County Sheriff Scott Steward said Sunday that Stephen Hammer, 19, and Tanner Vanpelt, 18, are being held at the Park County Detention Center in Cody. They will be formally charged with the killings and other crimes on Tuesday, Steward said in a news release.

"This is nothing short of cold-blooded murder," Steward said.

He identified the victims as Ildiko Freitas, 40, and her parents, Janos Volgyessi, 69, and Hildegard Volgyessi, 70. All lived in Clark.

The slayings were reported at about 11:15 a.m. Saturday when a neighbor found two people shot inside a house. Sheriff's deputies and ambulance personnel were dispatched to the house, where a third body was found in the basement.

Witnesses told authorities that two slender white men entered the house on Big View Road and then two cars left the property at a high speed. One of the cars was recognized as belonging to Freitas, Steward said.

Witnesses provided descriptions of the vehicles and Wyoming Highway Patrol troopers located the cars several miles away and took the two Cody men into custody without incident.

A neighbor, Robert Bushman Jr., said some of his neighbors who saw the victims' dogs chasing two vehicles down the road became concerned and found the people shot in the home.

"The neighbors are shell shocked," he said.

Bushman said he lives across the road about 600 yards from the house where the killings took place. Big View Road is a dead-end road with four or five homes sitting on 40-acre lots, he said.

"We look out for unusual vehicles," he said, because the road doesn't get much traffic.

He said Saturday is his house-cleaning day, so he was busy in his house and didn't notice anything unusual. When he did look outside, he saw his neighbors' house surrounded by sheriff's vehicles and an ambulance. He first thought that Janos Volgyessi may have had a heart attack.

He said Clark has about 325 residents, two churches, a couple construction businesses and one elementary school. It is a quiet community where "everyone goes to church."

Clark, about 30 miles north of Cody off state Highway 120, is a community of widely scattered houses on a sagebrush prairie sloping up to the Beartooth Mountains.

Only an occasional vehicle was seen on the roads around the community Sunday as fierce winds whipped across the landscape. 

The triple homicide left residents on edge. When a Billings Gazette reporter rang the doorbell of one house in Clark on Sunday afternoon, a man gripping a black assault rifle pointed to the ground walked around from the garage.

Residents are suspicious of any unfamiliar cars now, he said before declining to be interviewed about the murders.

At the Edelweiss — a bar, cafe and convenience store on state Highway 120 across from the road to Clark — Lora Ryan was tending bar.

Ildiko Freitas had stopped by the Edelweiss a couple of times since Ryan began working there about four months ago.

Called "Koko" by some, Freitas was "a nice, pretty lady," Ryan said, adding that it broke her heart to hear of the death.

Friday night, Freitas came to the Edelweiss to meet several ladies, who then went to Cody for dinner, Ryan said.

Clark is a close, caring community, Ryan said. She was homeless when she stopped by the Edelweiss for a hamburger a few months ago. The owner hired her on the spot and someone else helped her find an apartment nearby.

Steward said the crime scene investigation is being conducted by the Wyoming State Crime Lab and Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation.

 

Locations

More from billingsgazette.com

(78) comments

just 4 justice

these two are the perfect examples of why when i see a male with earrings and tatoos i imediately think of trash

kimi

I'm afraid of people like you

just 4 justice

you do not have to be scared of people like me i don't have earrings or tats it's the ones who do that you need to be scared of check the prisons then you will know what i am talking about!

kimi

I am afraid of people like you! I do have body art and have seen inside prisons, my friends are sheriffs and attorney's and a good majority of inmates receive their tattoos in prison. But my point is not to judge!!! We all will be judged in due time and I'm not going to be that person judging another by appearance.
Let's just give our sympathy and prayers to the family!!!

Laughter

"But my point is not to judge!!! We all will be judged in due time and I'm not going to be that person judging another by appearance." While one would like to be able to live the adage "you can't always judge a book by its cover" 100% of the time I would hope that you are somewhat more cautious around strangers than your post indicates you to be. We make judgements about different things all day long and like it or not appearance is one we make judgements on. I see someone with their head shaved, wife beater t-shirt, military style combat boots, and swastika tats guess what "kimi"..I'm gonna take a wide berth. I see someone tatted up with gang symbols and prison tats I'm gonna think twice about giving them my biggest smile. Common sense decrees you make some judgement based on appearances now and again.

just 4 justice

I think we can agree anybody with at least a kindergarden education can see that prisoners are using the same mentality that landed them in prison to destroy their bodies with ugly tattoos

lefty the cowboy

Tattoos and piercing jewelry are very poplular these days, over much of the world. If you are afraid and biased against everyone who follows this trend, you are pretty insulated from reality. Had a heart doctor with a stud through her eyebrow and a diamond in her nose... beautiful young woman, smarter than every other heart Doc in that large clinic.

KingRichard

IF convicted of this crime both men should be executed quickly and painlessly. We are spirits living in a material world and IF convicted these 2 spirits have clearly demonstrated they do not have a right to their lives. In answer to the "judge not etc" crowd how cheaply U treat the rights of the murdered victims and their families shows me UR complete lack of understanding of God and justice. And for those who will say I couldn't live with myself if I had to be the one to execute convicted murderers let me assure you that I could and in fact would proudly put it on my resume!

shagy

There needs to be way to let the public see them to there death. It might make the next guy think about it. I just would like to know why they did this. What did they do for the two days before the crime. They both are young boys what a wast. There is nothing that could be done to the both of them that would bring justice to the family of there victim's.

And Why

Unbelievable! The narrow mindedness of some people! I have earrings. I have MANY tattoos. You have the gull to judge me? To compare me to these individuals? YOU are the one I fear.

just 4 justice

ya and i bet you hve a real good job too

curlin

Is it just ironic that nearly all major crimes involve people with tattoos and/or ear rings? You are being judged by your appearance whether YOU like it or not.

kimi

I absolutely agree with you! Its the ignorant people that scare me and judge me for my body art! Come on people didn't your mama teach u not to judge a book by its cover!!!!!
We are suppose to be the most intelligent creatures! Well sometimes I beg to differ with comments like that!!!:)

Laughter

I think I can make a reasonable guess that with most people it's the KIND of tats and piercings that make them question and be cautious of a person. Butterflies, rainbows, ladybugs, a buxom hula girl or "Mom" in a heart or anchor, even skulls and cross-bones(so passe' now) usually doesn't send them screaming into the streets :0)

Riverview

In cold blood? Interesting choice of words. I wonder what the story is?

kimi

Ignorant comment! I love my body art and still would never hurt anyone!!!!
Sad world we live in!
Deepest sympathy for the family!

terbear

That is so narrow minded. I have two boys who have tattoos and earrings have they have great jobs a family and are well respected So that offends me terribly. Not all guys who have tattoos an earring are trash or MURDERS.....really wow. Sad

shagy

Narrow minded is it. Some one might sorry to the family's who have fallen victim. To the young boys. Some one might ask why. But they need to keep the hate going. This is a family killed by two kids. They should be respected more then this.talk about how bad men and women are with tattoo and holes threw out there body for facebook.

terbear

You are so right shagy. I am so sorry for this family. People are going to think what they want. Who cares. What we need is some prayers for this family. And community and even for the family of these boys... I am scared to death I live 20 miles from this community and have my whole life. Prayers for all

just 4 justice

sure is funny how you never see the man delivering your mail or the ups man or people working for the power companies all people with good jobs with excellent benefits walking around all tatooed up with earrings looking like zombies! I would like to see what you people sticking up for these murders with tattoos and earring s have for jobs and retirement accounts. I do not care if you like it or not I am going to hang out with respectable looking people because they are also the most successful and I believe you become what you hang around with

terbear

My boys do not look like zombies. And they have very good jobs ..and I am not sticking up for these hoodlums. I am scared to death I live 20 miles from Clark. But tattoos and earrings don't kill. Stupid people kill. It's sad we are arguing about something that really does not matter there is a family that was murdered. Really. Wow

terbear

I am not sticking up for these murders. Just saying that tattoos and earrings do not kill stupid people kill..my boys do not look like zombies, they have great jobs and there tattoos do not show. But none the less they have them..sorry you think like that ps. Our ups guy does have a tattoo just does not show..

kimi

That's sad you are that way! I will say that I work with a former NFL quarterback my friends are sheriffs lawyers and very respectable people and one word of advise I would like for you to have is that please don't judge people on there appearance u don't sound intelligent by that! I wish for u a better way to see a clear picture!

just 4 justice

Kimi did it ever occure to you that these sheriffs and lawyers might be using you for a source of information of criminal activity or just perhaps for something to laugh at?

lefty the cowboy

...in other words you hope to hang out with other bigots. Trouble is, most people, even most of us that pre-date this fashion fad, understand how stupid it is to judge people based on fashion. Here is some more news... most of those UPS and power company people who are younger than 35 or so have tattoos... they just cover them up at work to avoid offending the bigots.

terbear

I am terribly offended by you saying tattoos and earrings are trash, I have two young men who have tattoos and earrings and they have great jobs,,,a family. And are well respected...they are not trash nor MURDERS....sorry you think that way...can't judge a book by its cover..

just 4 justice

are they well respected by the law enforcement?

terbear

Yes they are never even had a traffic ticket...

just 4 justice

well all i have to say is that i am sure glad i invested in my 2 childrens college fund instead of earrings and tattoos as they have been raised with my values and now both have masters degrees. The reason i feel sorry for them is because now they like me will have to pay very high taxes to pay for prison costs that are over flowing with all these tattooed earringed upstanding citizens you support!

just 4 justice

for all of you that think i do not know what i am talking about, please stop by the nearest state prison to you and take a look at the inmates appearance and then tell me i don't know what i am talking about!

kimi

Just an FYI prison inmates get most of there tattoos in prison!!!!
Huh! Educate yourself! And I'm sorry to say but no ones defending these 2 criminals were just sick of ignorant people!
But that's ok we all understand there's people like u out there just 4 justice!!!

just 4 justice

that's ok Kimi if you want to look like a prison felon knock yourself out but what nomal person would want to?

denverbfan

I am also offended by the ignorance of those who feel tattoos and earrings= "bad" people! My don & his wife both have tattoos. Although I don't personally care for them, I certainly don't judge anyone by them. My son & his wife both have professional jobs, awesome retirement accounts, are great parents, go to church, and DO NOT do drugs, harm others, etc. as for the comment about those of us defending those with tests or earrings, I have a professional job on education, hold a Master's degree, own 2 homes, and have a retirement account!! How absurd that people are do closed-minded. Oh, BTW, my son used to have an earring but no longer does. He wasn't a hard core criminal back then, either! I am both offended AND fired up!!!!

just 4 justice

how many tattoos and earrings do you have if you think they are such a good deal?

denverbfan

After my rant, I just want yo say that I hope justice prevails regarding these nurses. My heart goes out to the families of those killed. I am praying for them as well of the families of the accused.

kimi

These 2 men just took 3 innocent lives and now leaves 1 man to bury his family! That's what needs remembered! This is a terrible act of violence and it doesn't matter what they look like its what they did!!!!!

concernedMT

Generally really inked up people dont hold a great job for sure...Neck tats really lol, nothing wrong with a few hidden ones though.

just 4 justice

thank you at least you can comprehend

lefty the cowboy

I know a fellow who is a highly paid, highly skilled, aviation technician who is covered with wild and colorful tattoos. If you cannot understand the difference between prison culture tatts and the body art so popular around the world these days, you are seriously out of touch.

Jason

I can't believe the posts on this story. Have tattoos or not who the hell cares!! My heart goes out to the family of the deceased. It's a sad and tragic event :( deepest sympathy and prayers to the family

shagy

If you ask me kind of sick. This is some ones family and most of the chat is on tattooed men and know one is talking about the family's. Both sides the young boys have thrown there life out the window to. And why they did it. I am sorry for there loss. And my prayers for the family's as well.

gpm

Whether you like it or not many people are judged by how they look, the pickup they drive, the condition of their home, their language, their hygiene, the company they keep, etc. I don't see that changing.

Google MS-13 and then go to images to see some "great" tats.

And Why

Just 4 justice......yea I do have a real good job. I make over six figures a year. I have been a hard working, tax paying member of this community for over 25 years. You my friend are small minded and weak at heart. BTW.....planning my next tattoo.

just 4 justice

if you don't think i know what i am talking about check the appearance of the prison population and six figures don't feel soo all alone so do I

terbear

You are so right Jason I am sorry I said anything cause people are going to think how they want the point is a family was murdered 20 miles from me and I am scared to death. And fel sooooo bad for the family. Please disregard what I have said and let's all pray for this family and the family of those boys Prayers are what we need....

it'sagoodlife

There are also a ton of tattooed people that are your hardworking, normal everyday people!
Sorry to the family for their loss. What a horrible story..

bees
bees

Wow! I came in to read more information about this horrific triple murder - and instead find a tattoo debate. SAD!!! Would be nice to get beyond personal opinions and attacks and spend that time -- like some here -- saddened deeply for the devasted families involved, the neighbors and yes, even the families of these 2 young men! Cold-blooded is right! To kill a woman and her two older parents. Thank the Lord NO ONE else was there.

Laughter

"Wow! I came in to read more information about this horrific triple murder - and instead find a tattoo debate." You gotta love how peoples minds work "bees". Everyone sees something different which is why you'll have one accident and 5 witnesses with 5 different accounts. My first thought in seeing the age of the perps...not the tats, not the gauging of the ears but the youthfulness and the coldness of the murder and I immediately thought "robbery". We'll see. Yes, the family needs prayers and thankfully no kids were there.

bees
bees

Also wondering what 'charges stemming from Tues.' is about!

neocon4hire

just 4 justice ....Adam lanza had no tattoos or piercings...do you hear that sinking sound? that's your argument....

just 4 justice

who in the hell is Adam Lanza?

cycotic
cycotic

Really? Adam Lanza? Sandy Hook Connecticut? 20 dead children? Sound familiar?

noahbear

So I guess that all the soldiers that defend your freedom that have tattoos are being judge by you. Thats just great! Also, the reason you dont see some peoples tattoos is because they cover them up at work. Just shows that some people are stuck in the past and are really closed minded. Shows where some people's education goes!!

pippi
pippi

I know Ildiko Freitas. I worked with her. She is a great woman, and a great nurse. Very well educated. By the way, just so everyone knows. She had a tattoo.

pippi
pippi

I know Ildiko Freitas. I worked with her. She was a nice lady and a great nurse. Oh, and by the way, so everyone knows, she had a tattoo. The point is, she and her parents died. What an awful thing to happen to nice people. Prayers to the husband, family, friends and coworkers.

Ghost cat

Gazette, will you do some follow up on this story? How was that house selected? Is there a connection between the two killers and the victims? Did these two killers case that area before the murder spree? Was this a home invasion robbery or did it involve drugs. I know you may net be able to give us that information yet, but it would give us some information and perhaps ease fears.

JoeN

I agree there needs to be a follow up. There is too much guessing. Also why did the Gazette distort the pictures? The one guy is huge at 6' 5+ and the other guy is 5' 10ish, but the why they show the pictures it is the other way around.

green123

What a shame that we as a community have allowed two boys to grow up without any sense of right and wrong. These boys must be severely disturbed, how is it that no one knew this? School etc? How could these boys actually believe this was a good life choice? Were these kids on meth? In light of firearm restrictions being proposed can we honestly believe the government is capable of protecting anyone?!!

driver

You are right Green, the government can't protect anyone all they can do is investigate crimes after the fact and hopefully take the perps out of society. Individuals and families must protect themselves first by teaching our children respect and right from wrong, secondly by arming ourselves against those who were never taught how to act in society.

cullen

Here are two individuals that made a bad choice. Now they will go to prison after many of our tax dollars go to paying their attorney's,and then on to prison life full of appeals,again on my dollar. They will never face the death penalty and never have to worry about a plate of food again. This is called punishment in our country. SAD, and we wonder why we have crime."Oh lets take the guns away that will solve problem!"

Pigdog

@green123-"These boys must be severely disturbed, how is it that no one knew this? School etc?"

It is the school's fault that these two chose this????? WOW. And-who ever said the government would protect everyone? That would be impossible. Just like schools fixing all of society's problems. The only people to blame are these two young men.

cycotic
cycotic

Just 4 justice, WHO THE HELL IS ADAM LANZA??? Are you kidding me? Do you watch the news? Does 20 kindergarten students murdered in Sandy Hook sound familiar?

Laughter

Why would you want to flatter, though unwittingly, the murderer by being upset because others don't remember his name? I'd be more upset if the 20 kids and 6 adults were forgotten but the murderer was immortalized in everyone's memory for his brutal murders.

neocon4hire

just 4 justice....you don't know who Adam lanza is?? newtown ring a bell?

MTGirl01
MTGirl01

Oh just 4 justice, you should come out of the rock you have been hiding under more often. My grandfather is a superior court judge with a PHD, and he has a (gasp) tattoo! He served in the military for many years and his tattoo is in rememberance of those he lost. I have a master's degree and I have 3 tattoos. It has nothing to do with education or behaviorism or ethics. The Adam Lanza comment gave away your knowledge level, nothing more to say on that topic.

just 4 justice

Before I started bragging about my grand daddy being a judge I would make sure he just didn't turn these guys loose last week for other crimes! seems to be the trend for judges now days.

bees
bees

I would love to see all of society FORGET Adam Lanza and these 2 murderers names as well! Instead, remember the names of some of the victims. Wondering if Ildeko had children these mens age? She was in Cody night before--[I think story said]……any connection there? So hoping this wasn't a random home invasion. Just a thought -- wonder if they had a weapon they could have used to protect themselves. It is all horribly sad, tragic and shows the EVILNESS and indifference of these two MEN! (Lets not refer to them as kids or boys please.)

2012

Kimi--I will always judge by appearance and demeanor. If you don't, you're a sitting duck for every criminal in the world. Where do you get the idea that we are not supposed to judge people? Are you confusing the biblical passage that admonishes us not to judge the "souls of man"? I agree with that, but we are to judge the actions and appearances with wisdom. How else would we ever stay safe in this crazy world? Would you answer the door in the dark of night to a couple of gang banger types with weapons in their hand when you lived at the end of a lonely road? I would hope not. But, you just judged them, and rightly so.

just 4 justice

right on 2012

lefty the cowboy

So anyone smart enough to not open the door for "a couple of gang banger types with weapons in their hand" also must distrust and disrespect 90% of your fellow citizens under 40? Hard to argue with logic like that.

2012

They just don't look like the killer types, but you just never know. John Wayne Gacey was a children's party clown.

puppylapue

Stephen is very cute... he is not the murderer. only Tanner

just 4 justice

After reading my comments it should come as no surprise to you that I did not know who Adam Lanza was! I DO NOT HANG AROUND TRASH OR LIKE IT AND I CONSIDER HIM TRASH ALSO! People like him disgust me and do not want to hear anything about him and was too sad to hear about all these kids murdered by some low life. And also zeros like him along with assault rifles are going to lead to my hunting guns taken away and that is why I did not know him.

Smith_J

Hmmm..curious. Makes me wonder what was in it for them. Were these people rich? What about the husband? Were there kids? So many unanswered questions yet...hope that they get all the answers to why it happened.

just because i can

just 4 justice- I'm able to be a stay at home mom because my husband has one of the highest paying jobs on this side of the state! he has more tattoos than I can count and many of them are visible in short sleeves. your ignorance makes me sick. how dare you and your narrow mind say that because people have tattoos that they are trash and don't have good jobs. I guarantee if u take business suits off of high paying executives you will see tattoos on many of them.

puppylapue

Stephen is very cute. I hope he gets released and they just charge Tanner who is not cute.

Bambam
Bambam

wow

gericht4freitas

@puppylapue you think he is so cute, so will the prisoners. How cute would he be if it was your families home he had showed up at?

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.