Police in New York City have arrested a 44-year-old man on charges of murder, criminal tampering, and criminal possession of a weapon in connection with the death of a Queens mother, the NYPD announced early Thursday morning.
David Bonola, 44, is the suspect who allegedly stabbed Orsolya Gaal, 51, nearly 60 times early Saturday morning, according to the New York Post and other local news reports.
“Gaal suffered 58 stab wounds to her neck, torso, arm and hand,” according to “police sources” cited by NBC News.
The New York Daily News described Bonola as Gaal’s “former lover,” and several other tabloids (and the Post) reported similarly. The Daily Mail said it was unclear when the two may have been “romantically involved” but reported the connection nonetheless.
At a Thursday morning press conference, the NYPD confirmed that Bonola and Gaal had been engaged in an “intimate affair” for about two years.
“We believe the relationship Mr. Bonola had with our victim was an intimate-type relationship,” said a homicide detective. He said the “heated” argument began over “domestic” issues between the two.
The NYPD said Bonola was employed as Gaal’s handyman for about two years. It was unclear whether Gaal let Bonola into the house before she was killed or whether Bonola entered the house via a key that was hidden on the property.
“They had been off and on, and they had broken up prior — but had reunited early in the month of April; their relationship was considered at an end,” a different NYPD official added.
Watch as @NYPDDetectives Chief James Essig provides an update in an arrest regarding the death of Orsolya Gaal. https://t.co/FvK8g6lJda
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) April 21, 2022
The victim’s cell phone sent a message to the victim’s husband, the NYPD said. The message referenced an alleged prior criminal act — but that message is believed to have been faked by the defendant, the NYPD said, citing the defendant’s purported confession.
The Daily News said Gaal was a married mother of two teenage boys.
.@NYPDDetectives have arrested a 44-year-old man from Queens in regard to the death of Orsolya Gaal. He has been charged with murder, criminal tampering, and criminal possession of a weapon.
Anyone with information on crimes in NYC is urged to call @NYPDTips at #800577TIPS. pic.twitter.com/7xVqWDoMui
— Commissioner Sewell (@NYPDPC) April 21, 2022
Gaal is believed to have joined friends for a show at Lincoln Center on Friday, then gone to a bar in her neighborhood as if to meet someone who never showed up, the Post reported by citing “sources” who were not named.
Gaal was stabbed to death in her own home and then stuffed “in a black Bauer hockey bag similar to one belonging to her kids,” the Post added. Doorbell cameras reportedly caught video of the suspected assailant lugging the bag through the neighborhood with Gaal’s body inside at about 4:30 a.m. Saturday.
The NYPD said Thursday morning that Bonola moved Gaal’s body because he didn’t want her family to see it. His alleged actions left a bloody trail through the neighborhood, the NYPD indicated.
The slaying happened, according to the Daily News, while Gaal’s husband and older son were visiting colleges on the West Coast. Her younger son was asleep in the home where the stabbing is believed to have occurred, the Daily News also reported.
NBC News said the killing occurred in the home’s basement. That network added that Gaal lived near Bonola.
The stab wounds suffered by Gaal suggested she fought for her life, according to law enforcement sources cited by the Daily News.
That publication also said a person walking a dog found Gaal’s remains. NBC News said the body was found at the “corner of Metropolitan Avenue and Jackie Robinson Parkway in Forest Hills.”
A pair of what the Post called “blood-soaked boots” left at Gaal’s home allegedly led the police to Bonola.
The NYPD said Thursday morning that authorities have also collected the defendant’s jacket, tee shirt, and bloody bandages as evidence. The defendant received treatment for wounds to his hands at an area hospital before he was taken into custody, the NYPD added.
There were no signs of forced entry, according to the Post’s unnamed sources, and the “violence suggested it was personal and fueled by anger specifically toward” the victim, the newspaper reported.
New York City television station WABC reported that Bonola simply walked up to detectives and said, “I hear you are looking for me.”
The defendant was described by NBC News and by the Post as Gaal’s handyman. Bonola allegedly confessed that he struck Gaal after an argument, according to police sources cited by the newspaper.
According to Gaal’s Facebook page, a person bearing the defendant’s name communicated with the victim on May 20, 2020.
“Tu mirada enamorada,” a profile bearing Bonola’s name wrote under a photo of Gaal. The Spanish line may have been a reference to a 1999 song; it roughly translates to English as follows: “your look in love.”
Gaal “liked” the comment. The Bonola profile “loved” it.
Screenshots of the conversation are below:
The victim’s profile indicates that she studied at the Budapest Business School College of International Management and Business. She pronounced her first name “OR-shaw-yuh.” Her hobbies included concerts, traveling, musical performance, sightseeing, hiking, theater, art, and learning.
[image of Bonola via mugshot; image of Gaal via Facebook]
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