Who was Angela Tramonte? Massachusetts woman dies on hike with Phoenix cop she met on Instagram
The Saugus woman was found dead and dehydrated on Camelback mountain while the off-duty cop said they went hiking without water
PHOENIX, ARIZONA: A Massachusetts woman was found dead last week on Camelback Mountain after she went hiking on Friday, July 30, with a Phoenix police officer. It was also reported that the woman met the officer through Instagram.
Friends and relatives are demanding answers following the ‘abrupt’ death of Angela Tramonte, who was found dead after having gone hiking along a Phoenix, Arizona trail with off-duty police officer and companion hiker Dario Dizdar, who had been previously reprimanded for lying.
Police stated that Tramonte, 31, of Saugus, Massachusetts was visiting her new boyfriend, Dizdar, 37, for the first time after they met on Instagram two months ago. Phoenix fire officials have stated that Tramonte started feeling too hot on the trail and decided to turn around. Her hiking partner, who her friends say is a Phoenix police officer and first responder, wanted to continue to the top of the 2,706-foot peak, so the couple split up on the way, leaving Tramonte to walk down the trail alone in July heat, officials said.
After around four hours, Tramonte’s body was found off the Echo Canyon Trail near a home on the northeast side of Camelback Mountain in Phoenix. Investigators believe the woman fell while seeking help for heat exhaustion and dehydration. The woman who was a fitness enthusiast and who according to her friends drank at least a gallon of water during exercise was discovered without any water. Tramonte’s exact cause of death has not been released yet.
Phoenix Police Department's spokeswoman, Mercedes Fortune, said that Dizdar told police that neither he nor Tramonte brought water on the hike. Phoenix police do not believe foul play was involved, nevertheless, doubts persist. "As a cop, as a first responder, you’re supposed to help people. If somebody’s walking up a mountain and you’re seeing her in distress and she’s not feeling well and she’s exhausted – why wouldn’t you walk her back down?" Tramonte’s friend Stacey Gerardi told CBS Boston. "Why would you continue to walk back up? It doesn’t make sense." "Not even 24 hours and she’s dead," Gerardi said. "We want justice. We want answers. We need to keep pushing. That was my sister. We had 25 years of friendship."
Another friend, Melissa Buttaro said, "If anybody knew Angela, she wouldn’t go anywhere without a gallon of water in her hand and I heard she was found without any water." A GoFundMe page, titled, ‘Justice for Angela’ set up by Tramonte’s friends also demand the police investigate further. The page's description read: "Angela Tramonte was born and raised in Saugus, MA. She was such a beautiful, kind, strong, good-hearted woman who would do anything for anyone. She recently took a trip to Arizona to meet a man she was talking to online for two months. They supposedly went for a hike at Camelback Mountain on Friday, July 30th. Halfway up the mountain, Angela told this man, who is a police officer and first responder, that she was exhausted and couldn't continue. She supposedly walked back down the mountain ALONE to the car while this man continued on by himself. He clearly has no regard for her safety. She went missing for hours and was found dead from heat exhaustion. Angela lived a very healthy, active lifestyle. She woke up early every morning to go to the gym. She did weekly meal planning and was obsessed with drinking water. She also loved walking her dog Dolce every day. There are many inconsistencies in the timeline and facts that just don't make any sense. We just want justice for our friend. Please consider donating to help us bring Angela's body home and pay for funeral expenses. Any help would be greatly appreciated." The page has raised $36,965 of the $40,000 goal.
Dizdar meanwhile, told authorities that he was an experienced hiker and had hiked previously “from the top to the bottom,” even during summer months. It continued to remain unclear why Dizdar, who probably knew about the dangers, left a novice hiker to hike in the extreme heat of 104 degrees alone. A report by The Daily Beast told of Dizdar, who has been with the Phoenix Police Department since 2007, that he was previously being disciplined for lying to Arizona police about his identity during a 2009 criminal investigation, according to internal affairs documents. According to internal Phoenix Police Department documents published by ABC 15 in 2020, Dizdar was previously disciplined and placed on a Maricopa County Attorney’s Office “Brady list” that tracks police officers with integrity concerns because of past offenses. The Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said that Dizdar is still on the list.