Pregnant woman’s attackers arrested; implicated suspects include baby’s father, his cousin and a fellow Marine

On June 20, 2012, the Redding Police Department investigated an assault and robbery that occurred on the River Trail near the Sundial Bridge. The victims told Officers they were walking west of the bridge when they were robbed by two subjects.

The victims were identified as Nicole Vultaggio, 18 years of Redding and Erica Swann, 29 years of Anderson. Vultaggio was eight months pregnant at the time of the assault and was taken to Mercy Medical Center where she gave birth to a premature but otherwise healthy baby.

Nicole Vultaggio and her baby. (Photo reprinted by permission of Nicole.)

Over the past thirty days Redding Police Investigators have worked diligently on the case. They focused their investigation on Erica Swann, who was not injured during the robbery and did not appear to be a target of the suspects. Investigators obtained cellular telephone records which revealed Erica Swann was texting with unknown subjects seconds before the assault.

A series of search warrants led Investigators to Camp Pendleton, north of San Diego, where Vultaggio’s former boyfriend resides and serves in the United States Marine Corps. The former boyfriend was identified as Lance Swann, 20 years of Laguna Niguel. Lance Swann and Erica Swann are cousins.

Investigators identified an associate of Lance Swann who also serves in the United States Marine Corp. The associate, Jeffrey Thomas Walton, 20 years of Ventura, told investigators that he participated in the assault/robbery along with Lance Swann. He confirmed Erica Swann was involved in the plot and had texted Lance Swann to signal when she and Vultaggio arrived at the trail.

Investigators served a search warrant at Erica Swann’s residence in Anderson and recovered property that she had reported taken during the robbery. Investigators arrested Erica Swann and ultimately booked her into the Shasta County Jail. Erica Swann was charged with conspiracy, robbery and felony assault.

Investigators obtained arrest warrants for Lance Swann and Jeffrey Walton who are being detained at Camp Pendleton by Naval Criminal Investigative Services (NCIS). Both subjects face charges of conspiracy, robbery and felony assault.

Lance Swann will also be charged with spousal abuse, as he is the father of Vultaggio’s newborn child.


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3 Responses

  1. James Montgomery James Montgomery says:

    The format of this column- stacking one item on top of the last- makes it unlikely that you will get many comments, as it is not clear which story the comments would apply to.

    • James, I hear you.

      The reason I did that was that we were so flooded with RPD press releases that for a time, the entire home page was dominated by them, which bumped out the other stories. It was looking like it was all crime and bad news, all the time.

      I'm working on a new system, and perhaps for a story like this one, I can break it out as its own story. Brb. I will do that now. Thanks, as always, for the insight and input.

  2. Avatar Katie says:

    I hope the mama and baby are going well. Hopefully the mom gets a stay-away order in place.