NEW YORK — The accused "duffel bag killer" pleaded guilty Wednesday in the savage stabbing death and dismemberment of his longtime married lover during a final and fatal argument in her Queens basement.
David Bonola, 44, had already confessed to police before his manslaughter plea to the gruesome April 16 killing of Orsolya Gaal, whose butchered remains were stuffed into a duffel bag and dumped in a nearby park after his surprise visit to her home ended in a bloodbath.
Bonola faces a 25-year prison term at his Nov. 16 sentencing for the lethal lovers’ quarrel in which Gaal was stabbed dozens of times, said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.
Bonola, wearing an orange jumpsuit and white face mask, politely responded “no thank you” when asked if he had any questions about the hearing. The defendant, who was living illegally in the U.S., was also sentenced to five years post-release supervision and could face deportation to his native Mexico.
“This heinous killing devastated an entire family, left two boys without a mother, and horrified the surrounding community,” said Katz. “The defendant has accepted responsibility and is being held fully accountable for his criminal actions.”
Gaal, 51, was stabbed 58 times when she tried to break off her relationship with the killer, her former handyman, and authorities said the spurned Bonola later admitted to the homicide when questioned by the NYPD.
Bonola and Gaal shared an on-and-off affair for two years before the deadly dispute where he arrived at her Forest Hills home in the middle of the night, grabbed a knife and attacked Gaal, authorities said.
He then hacked up the victim’s body before stuffing her dismembered remains into a hockey equipment bag belonging to one of her sons, and was caught on surveillance video dragging the corpse to nearby Forest Park — leaving a blood trail leading back to Gaal’s home.
The Hungarian immigrant’s body was later discovered by a neighborhood dog walker.
Bonola, the divorced father of two, met Gaal met when he was doing work on her tony Tudor home, with a romance ensuing. One of her two sons was inside the residence on the night of the killing and slept through the attack, while the other was traveling with her husband on a tour of Oregon college campuses.
No members of the victim’s family appeared for the hearing. Investigators had found a chilling note on the family fridge after the killing: “GET A NEW HANDYMAN.”
Gaal had returned home after going to a Good Friday show at Lincoln Center with friends and stopping for a nightcap at a nearby bar. Neighbors described her as a devoted mom with a perpetual smile on her face. She first met Bonola when he came by the house to do some work.
But the two were at odds by the time of her death on the end of her lover’s blade.
“We went down the basement to talk and it turned into an argument,” Bonola confessed to detectives. Authorities said he ignored repeated requests to leave before grabbing a steak knife and stabbing Gaal over and over and over again.
Bonola was quickly identified as a suspect and taken into custody four days later. While locked up for the killing, the defendant told the Daily News that he was still in love with Gaal.