Woman Charged with Murder in Death by Kayak

Was it a tragic kayaking accident on the Hudson River or homicide? That’s the question that will soon be put to a New York jury in the case of Angelika Graswald who’s accused of murdering her fiance. 

But it wasn’t an ordinary act of homicide, prosecutors allege. This homicide came in the form of a kayak.

In an interview with an investigator Graswald, who is 36, admitted to removing the drainage plug on the top of her fiance’s kayak and withholding a paddle from him when he struggled to get out of the water.

Experts say removing the plug from the top would not cause the kayak to capsize but it could become unstable if enough water splashed inside. 

The pair had set on a mild Sunday in two kayaks from the western shore of the Hudson River. Vincent Viafore, 46, capsized somewhere on the journey toward Bannerman Island, and according to prosecutors Graswald did not render assistance. He was also reportedly not wearing a life jacket and in the frigid waters likely became hypothermic. 

They said she even admitted that he pleaded with her to call 911, which she did not. Instead she said she “kind of reached over and took his paddle from him and strapped it onto her kayak,” the investigator told the court.

The stunning revelations come during the pretrial hearings for Graswald. She reportedly met up with investigators about a week after her fiance’s disappearance in April 2015 and spoke with one of the officers working the case for about 45 minutes.

At the time, she was being viewed as a grieving widow, but not anymore.