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Handyman arrested in death of NYC mom had intimate relationship with her, police say

A 44-year-old man was arrested overnight in the death of Orsolya Gaal, 51, who was found in a duffel bag on the side of the road days earlier.

Days after a woman’s body was found in a duffel bag on the side of the road in New York City, police have made an arrest.

On Thursday, the NYPD revealed that officers arrested a 44-year-old man from Queens named David Bonola overnight, a man they said had an intimate relationship with the victim.

He’s currently being held at the 112 Precinct and has been charged with murder, criminal tampering and criminal possession of a weapon.

The NYPD have arrested David Bonola in the death of a mother of two whose body was found in a duffel bag by the side of the road in Queens.
The NYPD have arrested David Bonola in the death of a mother of two whose body was found in a duffel bag by the side of the road in Queens.TODAY

The body of Orsolya Gaal was found in a neighborhood close to her home in Queens on April 16.

The 51-year-old mother of two was stabbed 58 times in the neck, torso and left arm, law enforcement sources told NBC New York.

The sources told NBC New York that Gaal had additional wounds on her hands which likely resulted from her attempts to fight off her attacker.

At a press conference Thursday, NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig told reporters that Bonola was approached by detectives Wednesday night and voluntarily “made incriminating statements” which led to his arrest.

Essig further explained that Bonola had an intimate relationship with the deceased and had met Gaal at her home Friday night, shortly after midnight.

“Mr. Bonola was a handyman that had been employed by Mrs. Gaal,” he said. “They had been having an intimate affair for approximately two years.”

A “heated argument” ensued between the pair, which Essig said resulted in “our victim being stabbed ruthlessly and brutally in excess of 55 times, causing her demise.”

Essig went on to note, “This investigation is still preliminary. There is a lot of work left to do.”   

Bonola allegedly killed Gaal in the basement of the house.

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Prior to Bonola’s arrest, surveillance footage from a nearby home security camera obtained by NBC New York showed a person of interest wheeling a duffel bag along 75th Avenue. A jogger discovered the duffel bag Saturday morning and called 911.

A trail of blood led police to Gaal’s home a half-mile away.

Sources also told NBC New York that the killer allegedly sent a threatening message from Gaal’s own cellphone to her husband at 5 a.m. Saturday, just three and a half hours before the body was discovered.  

Gaal’s husband and her oldest son were away from home and visiting colleges on the West Coast when the gruesome discovery was made. Police believe the couple's 13-year-old son may have been home with Gaal when she was killed.