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Suspect in assault caught in Bronx

A 54-year-old man sought by Cheektowaga police in connection with a violent domestic assault was taken into custody Wednesday in New York City.

Joseph Hechavarria, also known as David Riley, was arrested by members of a U.S. Marshals Service fugitive task force without incident, town police announced.

Hechavarria was taken into custody at a residence in the Bronx and is on his way back to Cheektowaga.

Town police dispatched a patrol car to meet the marshals in Central New York, to transfer Hechavarria into their custody.

Police said he will face charges of rape, assault, unlawful imprisonment and criminal possession of a weapon, stemming from an early December attack on his then-girlfriend. The 39-year-old woman was treated at a hospital for multiple stab wounds.

The attack occurred in Hechavarria's Garden Village apartment but wasn't reported until Dec. 3 -- a day and a half later, according to Detective Michael Hockwater.

"He held her there for over a day," Hockwater said. "There were several stab wounds to her neck. It's by the grace of God he didn't strike a major artery."

It's believed a kitchen knife was used in the attack, he said.

Police were in contact with Hechavarria during their investigation, and he had agreed to turn himself in, the detective said. But, perhaps after realizing the gravity of the situation, he fled.

Investigators with the Marshals Service task force developed leads on his possible whereabouts -- apparently he has relatives in New York City, Hockwater said -- and contacted their colleagues downstate about where to find him.

Depending on what time Hechavarria returns to Cheektowaga, he was to be arraigned Wednesday or today in Town Court.

On Dec. 7, a woman was killed during another domestic assault at Garden Village Apartments.

A neighbor had called police early that morning to report hearing the sound of a man beating a woman. Officers had to break into the apartment, where they found Chandra Walker and her husband, Trevell, in a bedroom.

An autopsy determined that Chandra Walker, 36, died from multiple stab wounds and blood loss, police said. Her husband, also 36, was taken into custody without incident. He was charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon.

e-mail: jhabuda@buffnews.com

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