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Police file murder charge in case 1st seen as kayak accident

MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. - A woman whose fiance has been missing since a kayaking trip 11 days ago has been charged with murder, authorities said Thursday.

Inconsistent statements by Angelica Graswald led to her arrest on charges she intentionally killed Vincent Viafore, state police said. Graswald, who's from Poughkeepsie, was arrested on Wednesday, and the Orange County district attorney's office announced the charges against her Thursday.

Graswald was jailed without bail and couldn't be reached for comment. Court officials and the district attorney's office weren't available to say if she has a lawyer who could comment for her.

Graswald originally told troopers she and Viafore, also of Poughkeepsie, were kayaking on April 19 when his boat capsized in choppy water near Cornwall-On-Hudson, a town 50 miles north of New York City.

She called 911 and said she couldn't find Viafore in the water, police said. She also reported falling out of herkayak and being picked up by a boater. She was treated for hypothermia.

Troopers said Graswald was wearing a life jacket but they believe Viafore wasn't.

Authorities said they believe Viafore ended up in the river at Bannerman Island, a landmark for its crumbling, castle-like 19th-century arsenal near the river's east shore.

Viafore is believed to be dead, but his body hasn't been found. Police aren't commenting on how he died or a possible motive.

The search for Viafore continues, police said, and they asked boaters, fishermen and hikers to be on the lookout.

State police and local marine patrols and fire departments have used boats and helicopters in the search.


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