Twin sisters in Rhode Island killed their 70-year-old father with a pair of garden shears during an argument earlier this year, authorities say.
Jennifer Pamula, 38, who hails from the mid-sized city of Woonsocket, was arraigned last Thursday; her sister, Danielle Pamula, 38, was arraigned last Friday. They stand accused of one count each of domestic murder over the late January death of Joseph Pamula, according to Providence, Rhode Island-based NBC affiliate WJAR.
“It was certainly, it was a violent death, that our officers immediately, when they responded into the scene, knew that they were dealing with what was going to be a homicide,” Woonsocket Police Chief Thomas Oates said in comments reported by the TV station.
The victim was found dead inside his own home on Jan. 30, police said at the time. He was stabbed in the neck with what law enforcement termed a “large” pair of garden shears, according to New England Cable News, a regional cable news network run by NBCUniversal.
The deceased man’s obituary notes his passions and employment over the years: “Mr. Pamula was a warehouse worker for local companies that included Tupperware, Ann & Hope, and most recently, TriLiteral. Joseph was a kind and social man, an accomplished guitarist who performed with several bands throughout the years, could be found at many open mic nights, and always enjoyed going for walks.”
The obituary does not mention the two daughters accused of killing him.
Initially, the extent of the gruesome scene was kept under wraps – but the incident was immediately investigated as a domestic homicide and one of the man’s daughters was questioned while in police custody within hours of the shocking discovery, WJAR reported.
According to Providence-based CBS/MyNetworkTV affiliate WPRI, law enforcement seized multiple knives, stone fragments with and without blood, a gargoyle head, a metal saw, phones, and clothing from both sisters from the residence on Cato Street.
At first, Jennifer Pamula was the lone suspect. Her sister allegedly told law enforcement that she had been showering at the time of the killing and then took a nap – waking later to find her father dead.
But then, law enforcement claimed, Danielle Pamula, who called the police on the day in question, began to tell people that she was, in fact, involved in the patricidal slaying, police said.
“Ultimately when confronted about matching injuries on her hand as well her as her twin sisters’ hand,” Special Assistant Attorney General Jessica Villella said in comments reported by WJAR late last week. “They both had injuries in this incident she admitted to police they had both taken part in the killing of her father.”
At the scene of the crime, Jennifer Pamula allegedly told police: “I had to do it,” and “I can’t be hurt anymore.”
Danielle later allegedly told law enforcement that the violence stemmed from an argument that her sister and father were having about selling the family home and getting rid of several cats.
“We had been out there on prior occasions for issues of domestic in nature, but none of them rose to the fact that anyone was assaulted or there was any violence in the home,” Oates told WJAR. “It was mainly some minor family disputes.”
Both defendants lived at home with their father when he was killed. Both twins are now being held without bail.
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Jennifer and Danielle Pamula accused of murdering their dad
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