Prep school trustee stabbed to death in New Hampshire hotel lobby

Dr. Catherine Houghton
The White Mountain School
Dr. Catherine Houghton
The White Mountain School

(CBS/AP) CONCORD, N.H. - A Vermont man has been arrested and charged with the fatal and apparently random stabbing of a boarding school trustee in the lobby of a New Hampshire hotel.

Rodney Hill of West Danville, Vt., was being arraigned Tuesday on second-degree murder charges in the death of Catherine Houghton of Novato, Calif.

Houghton is an alumnus and member of the board of trustees at the White Mountain School in Bethlehem, N.H., where she delivered the commencement address in 2011.

According to CBS Boston, Houghton was at the Hampton Inn hotel for The White Mountain School Board of Trustees winter meeting. She was living in California.

Senior Assistant Attorney General Susan Morrell said Littleton police were called to the hotel just before 9 p.m. Monday. They found Houghton with multiple stab wounds to the neck and torso. Police say they encountered Hill outside the hotel and took him into custody.

Houghton died later at Littleton Regional Hospital. An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday.

Prosecutors have made no mention of a motive in the killing. Morrell said Houghton and Hill did not know one another and the killing appears to be random. Hill is being held without bond.

Houghton obtained her master's and doctorate degrees from Stanford University, according to the White Mountain School website, and spent most of her career as a commercial counselor for the business division for the U.S. Foreign Service. She has a pilot's license and volunteered her services for Angelflight - which provides transportation to indigents in medical need, according to a tribute on the school's website.