Kayaking Fiancée Charged with Murder as Stories Change and Diary Found

Orange County Sheriff's Office, Facebook

Much changed in the story of a lost kayaker between April 19 and the 30th, when discovery of a diary may have factored into his fiancée going from attempted rescuer to accused murderer, despite a still-missing body.

Angelika Graswald, 35, told police that she and fiancé Vincent Viafore, 46, had been kayaking for about three hours in the Hudson River when his kayak capsized. “I saw him struggling a little bit, he was trying to figure out how to paddle the waves… because they were getting crazy,” she reportedly described. She claims that she then watched his boat flip.

In at least one variation of her story to police regarding the events of April 19, Graswald called 911, then attempted to rescue her husband-to-be. She told authorities she fell out of her own kayak and a boater rescued her.

Orange County 911 received the call that Viafore’s kayak capsized, leading New York State Police to respond, a statement from Orange County, New York District Attorney David Hoovler detailed. Both Viafore and Graswald’s kayaks were recovered, but Viafore himself remained missing.

“Initially, we believed her to be a survivor of a tragic accident,” Troop F’s Major Patrick Regan said according to the Poughkeepsie Journal. But early inconsistencies in her stories left police questioning.

Graswald’s Facebook posts in the days between her fiance Viafore’s disappearance and her arrest ranged from photos and video of dogs, cats and a bird to pictures of the couple with phrases like, “Miracles ARE possible. The authorities are doing everything they can.” On April 26, she posted an image of a castle on Bannerman Island, the location the couple had kayaked to the day Viafore disappeared, police said this week.

Graswald spoke with Weschester News 12 from the Orange County Jail proclaiming her innocence. She denied allegations that she tampered with Viafore’s kayak in order to kill him, saying those accusations came after police discovered her diary.

That statement stands in contrast to Regan’s words that attributed Graswald’s arrest to statements she made Wednesday. “She made statements that implicated herself in this crime — enough to certainly have reasonable cause to have made the arrest,” New York State Police Maj. Patrick Regan said, according to CBS New York.

News 12’s April 30 report describes Graswald’s diary as allegedly containing details of Viafore’s appetite for peculiar sexual acts, including a requests for a third participant. Graswald’s diary allegedly reveals she had wished her fiancé were dead. She reportedly told News 12 that she wrote those feelings in the diary during troubled times.

On April 30, New York State Police charged Graswald with second-degree murder for Viafore’s presumed death. DA Hoovler reportedly stated that his office has prosecuted murder cases without bodies before.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana


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