Charges brought in Orchard Park cold case murder

Sep 27, 2012

Federal and local authorities say they have cracked a cold case murder that took place in Orchard Park three years ago. 

Angela Moss, a 39-year-old nurse from Amherst, was shot to death on California Road on August 27, 2009.  A federal grand jury has returned a seven-count indictment alleging that Moss's fiance, 44-year-old Ronald Epps, killed her in a scheme to collect on her life insurance policy. 

In July of that year, Epps convinced Moss to make a change to her $100,000 policy that would make him the sole beneficiary. 

U.S. Attorney William Hochul says Epps picked Moss up from her work on the night of the 27th, drove her to a secluded area, and shot her in the head.  He tried, but failed, to collect on the insurance claim just days later. 

As of now, Epps has not been charged with murder by the Erie County district attorney, but the U.S. Attorney's Office says it has been in contact with DA Frank Sedita's office.  Hochul says regardless, Epps faces federal charges related to his series of actions, including mail fraud and wire fraud.

"The grand jury has accused Mr. Ronald Epps of a wire fraud charge which basically says he first killed Miss Moss, then set out to collect on the life insurance policy, and then used wire communications in order to communication with State Farm," Hochul said at a Thursday afternoon news conference.

Epps is also accused of arson and possession of a Molotov Cocktail for allegedly setting fire to his Cascade Drive apartment on  the following year in a separate attempt to collect on a renter's insurance policy.  That claim successfully paid him $3, 769.

If convicted on all counts, Epps faces a sentence of 30 years-to-life in prison and/or a $1.5 million fine. His next court appearance is set for October 4.