Indictment in 1988 stabbing death of a Fall River mother - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Indictment in 1988 stabbing death of a Fall River mother

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Courtesy: Fall River Herald Courtesy: Fall River Herald

By: Melissa Toupin

It's a moment Gayle Botelho's family has been waiting nearly 25 years for. Monday a Bristol County grand jury returned a single indictment charging Daniel Tavares in the 1988 stabbing death of Botelho. 

The Fall River mother of three was 32 years old when she mysteriously vanished from her Prospect St. in October of 1988. Botelho's body was found nearly 12 years later buried the backyard across the street from her home on June St.  Tavares previously lived in the home.

"My regret is my mom. She passed away. She didn't get to see this day. She did get to bury her daughter, but she didn't get to see the person responsible for taking her away," said Bothelo's sister Beverly Souza. 

Tavares was linked to the murder but never charged until now. Bristol County District Attorney Samuel Sutter says a witness, who was part of Tavares' alibi, changed their version of the events.

The break in the cold case brought Bothelo's family to tears. Her daughter, Heather Brogan, was just four years old when she lost her mom.  

"We've always had her there with us in spirit," said Brogan.

Tavares is a convicted killer. He served time for stabbing his mother to death and is accused of murdering a couple in Washington state.

Tavares is currently in the custody of the State of Washington. The District Attorney's office is working to bring him to Massachusetts to be arraigned, but say it could be several months before that happens.


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