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Pizzeria Owner Allegedly Killed Co-Owner And Boyfriend In Self Defense, Kept His Body In Bedroom
Anna Maria Tolomello confessed to killing her business partner and significant other, Giovanni Gallina, but said she did so as he was allegedly strangling her. She then kept his body wrapped up in the bedroom for nearly two weeks.
A Pennsylvania pizzeria owner has been charged with murdering her co-owner and longtime partner and allegedly attempting to bury him in her driveway.
Anna Maria Tolomello, 48, was arraigned on Wednesday in connection with the shooting death of missing man Giovanni Gallina, 65, according to the Bucks County District Attorney's Office.
Gallina’s son, who lives in Italy, alerted Hilltown Police on Tuesday that he hadn’t been able to reach of his father since March 16.
According to court documents, Tolomello allegedly told Phillip Gallina that his father was out of town on business and he left his phone at Pina’s Pizza, the Chalfont eatery the two jointly owned. She claimed she didn’t know when her live-in partner would be back and refused to tell his son where Gallina had supposedly gone.
Employees at the pizzeria confirmed to police that they hadn’t seen Gallina in some time.
On Tuesday, police said they interviewed an unnamed individual who claimed Tolomello had texted them on March 19 about using their excavator to dig a hole in the driveway of her home in Hilltown Township, court records show. Tolomello would not reveal why she wanted the witness to dig a hole but requested it be seven feet long, three feet wide and three feet deep.
She refused the witness’s help to fill the hole and said she would do it herself. The witness and Tolomello exchanged messages on Tuesday, after which the person went and dug the hole as requested, while police surveilled the property.
Tolomello paid the witness $350 for his services later that day at Pina’s Pizzeria, where police said the exchange was audio recorded. When the witness asked Tolomello where Gallina was, she said, “He is away.”
Later on Tuesday, Hilltown Police and the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office obtained a search warrant and went to Tolomello and Gallina’s home.
“She advised she knew why law enforcement was present,” stated police. “She told officers she should have contacted law enforcement a week ago.”
Police told her to stop talking when, unprompted, she began confessing to Gallina’s murder, stating he was “wrapped up” and inside their home.
Officers found Gallina wrapped in a blue tarp and comforter inside the couple's master bedroom. He was still wearing pajamas and had a black garbage bag over his head.
His injuries were consistent with a gunshot wound to the head, according to reports.
“Tolomello stated that [on] the evening of March 16, 2022, she shot Gallina in his left temple while he was strangling her in the bed inside their master bedroom.”
Tolomello allegedly disclosed that she removed the bloody mattress from the residence and transported it to Pina’s Pizza, where she put it in the business' dumpster. She also allegedly confessed to going to further lengths to clean up the crime scene, including her attempts to wipe her fingerprints off of the .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver she had used, to collect the shell casings and to clean the carpet where blood spilled while she was moving the body.
Police say that Tolomello further admitted to contacting someone else on March 18 and asking if there were “any tricks” to cover up a smell, claiming she had a skunk in her garage — but allegedly confessed that her inquiry was to hide the odor of Gallina’s decomposing body.
A GoFundMe page was created to raise funds for Gallina’s son to travel to America and for funeral costs.
“‘The Boss’ was a good man that was tough on the outside but loving on the inside,” the creator wrote. “He helped many people in need, including myself, and I will forever be grateful. I can write pages about this man’s impact on so many people. He was funny, kind-hearted, and [a] good person all around.”
Anna Maria Tolomello was charged with criminal homicide, abuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence and possession of an instrument of a crime. She is scheduled to appear in court for a preliminary hearing on April 19.