Produced by Patti Aronofsky, Elena DiFiore and Lourdes Aguiar
[This story first aired on Sept. 12, 2015. It was updated on July 29, 2017.]
A New York woman is accused of killing her fiance, VIncent Viafore, while on a kayaking trip on the Hudson River in 2015. Peter Van Sant and “48 Hours” investigated the case for months and obtained evidence that raised some questions about the charges against Angelika Graswald. Some of those questions would change the course of the prosecution with some interesting legal maneuvers just this week.
“I’m in the Hudson River, my fiancé fell in the water, can you please call anybody. … I can’t get to him. It’s very windy and the waves are coming in and I can’t paddle to him. He is getting further and further away from me …he’s gonna drown!”
It was the evening of Sunday, April 19, when desperate sounding call to 911.made a
“At approximately 7:30 in the evening I got a phone call … that there was a situation … a capsizing of a kayak,” said Jeff Schaack, commodore at the Cornwall Yacht Club in New York’s Hudson Valley.
Graswald’s call was obtained by “48 Hours”:
Angelika Graswald: He’s gonna drown. Please call somebody–
911 operator: We’ve got help on the way.
Angelika Graswald: The waves are very strong. I can see his — I can still see his head…
911 operator: OK.
Angelika Graswald: Hold on, baby!
“It did get choppy out. Three to four-foot swells. …I would never be out there,” Schaack told “48 Hours” of the conditions on the river.”They immediately went into the work boat … to help rescue this person.”
Angelika Graswald: I can’t see him anymore.
911 operator: You don’t see him?
Angelika Graswald: No.
The sun was setting; the river turning dark.
“They pulled her out of the water,” Schaack said. “They never saw another person in the water.”
Vincent Viafore’s body had been swallowed up by the river. It all appeared to be a tragic accident. But within days, investigators heard disturbing reports that…