Murder suspect located and arrested on Mid-Hudson Bridge

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Paul Senecal, wearing tan boots, being taken into custody on the bridge. Copyright Mid-Hudson News 2022.

POUGHKEEPSIE – A man believed to have murdered his ex-girlfriend’s daughter on Sunday afternoon in the Town of Wappinger was located Sunday evening after a multi-agency manhunt.

Paul Senecal. Photo via social media

City of Poughkeepsie Police took 38-year-old Paul Senecal into custody Sunday at 8:18 p.m.  The man was pacing back and forth on the pedestrian sidewalk on the Mid-Hudson Bridge.

The saga began when Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to 40 Scott Drive in Wappinger just before 6:00 p.m. Sunday, May 29, for a report of a violent domestic incident.  Responding deputies found a woman, now identified as 29-year-old Melanie Chianese, suffering from multiple stab wounds, according to sources.

Dutchess County 911 issued an advisory for all police to attempt to locate a 2014 Honda Odyssey van, operated by Senecal.  The victim was transported to a local hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.

A New York State Trooper located the subject vehicle at the Van Wyck parking lot of the Dutchess County Rail Trail in East Fishkill at 6:14 p.m. but was unable to locate Senecal.

Later Sunday evening, Hyde Park Police were contacted by Senecal’s ex-wife, a Hyde Park resident, who said the wanted man had just called her.  He told his ex-wife that he was on foot in the wooded area of Rinaldi Boulevard in Poughkeepsie and planned to commit suicide by jumping off of the parking deck at Vassar Brothers Medical Center.  Numerous police agencies responded around 8:15 p.m.and canvassed the area with negative results.

Minutes later, staff at the Mid-Hudson Bridge contacted city police to advise of a man matching the description of Senecal on the bridge walk, pacing back and forth.  Within minutes, police had the 6’4″ tall man, who weighs approximately 270 pounds in custody and were transporting him to city police headquarters.

The incident began when the victim’s neighbor, Natalie Beboya, who was cutting her lawn, saw the victim walk across the street toward her home.

“I couldn’t quite hear what she was saying, she couldn’t speak properly. She ended up crossing over the street to talk to me and then collapsed in front of my mailbox, in front of my lawn, and that’s when I noticed she was full of blood, she was not properly clothed, and it looks like she had been stabbed,” Beboya said.

Anyone with additional information is asked to contact the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office at 845-486-3800.