Skip to main Content
Crime & Courts

Man wanted on $50K arrest warrant tied to infant's death

  • Author: Jerzy Shedlock
  • Updated: September 28, 2016
  • Published December 26, 2014

In June, medics and police responded to the Spenard Motel and found Aaron Vanormer's 2-month-old baby dead. Vanormer wasn't charged with any crime after an initial interview, but is now wanted on a $50,000 arrest warrant stemming from a manslaughter charge filed Friday in Superior Court.

The charge alleges Vanormer intentionally, knowingly or recklessly caused the death of the infant. Anchorage police detective Deven Cunningham stated in a criminal complaint that heavy Spice, or synthetic marijuana, use caused the defendant to hallucinate while he was supposed to be caring for the newborn.

Vanormer's wife, Vanessa Wulf, was in jail for probation violations at the time of the infant's death; Vanormer was responsible for his daughter's care, according to the complaint.

The mother's uncle helped take care of the baby when Vanormer worked. But in an interview with police, the uncle allegedly said Vanormer stopped going to work the week before the death. Additionally, Vanormer would spend his off time smoking what the uncle believed was "Spice," according to the complaint.

The infant's maternal grandfather stopped by motel room 17 on June 23 to check up on Vanormer and the baby. He had not heard from Vanormer for multiple days at that point and was concerned, Detective Cunningham wrote. No one answered the door.

Vanormer's motel room was "disheveled" the next day when the grandfather returned. The baby was nowhere in sight, according to the complaint.

The grandfather "asked Vanormer where (the 2-month-old) was, and Vanormer said that Wulf had picked her up the day prior." He reminded Vanormer that Wulf was in jail, but he allegedly stuck to his story.

He found the baby lying motionless in the bathroom tub, according to the complaint, and yelled for someone to call 911.

Officers arrived shortly thereafter, and a distraught Vanormer told them he remembered Wulf coming to the motel and placing the baby in the tub, "propping her up to keep her out of the water," the complaint says. It says he then did not return to the bathroom for two hours.

"He said that he remembered arguing with Wulf clearly, but he now realized he must have been hallucinating," Cunningham wrote. "He said he was sleep deprived and that he has not slept in 2-3 days."

Vanormer was interviewed but not arrested, according to the complaint. It's not known where he is now, police said.

Vanormer's previous trouble with the law includes 14 convictions dating back to 2004, including misdemeanor assaults, disorderly conduct and felony burglary.

Local news matters.

Support independent, local journalism in Alaska.