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Posted Thursday, July 31, 2008
NYPD, with ease, apprehend Haitian man accused of violently terminating woman's life in Mass.
By Samantha Gross, Associated Press Writer                 

NEW YORK - A man accused of fatally stabbing a woman in a Massachusetts apartment and then fleeing with his four children and their mother was arrested Wednesday by police, who said the siblings and their mother were in good health and apparently had not been taken against their will.
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Rodelyn Petitbois in an undated photo holding an unidentified baby.
Rodly Petitbois was arrested as he walked down a Brooklyn street, while his children and their mother were found safe sitting under a tree in that borough's Prospect Park, police said.

Earlier, Massachusetts State police had said the siblings and their mother had been taken against their will. On Wednesday night, New York City police said they believed the family had not been abducted, but they said the details of the situation weren't available. The children's mother was not believed to be an accomplice, they said.

A spokesman for prosecutors in Massachusetts said they were investigating the circumstances under which the family left with Petitbois.
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Rodelyn Petitbois and family at the Boston's South Station train and bus terminal early Wednesday morning enroute to N.Y. City. (Mass. State Police Photo)
State police in Massachusetts and New York had issued Amber Alerts for the children, who range in age from 11 months to 3 years, and authorities had said they believed Petitbois was extremely dangerous and possibly armed. They said he was unarmed when he was found.

Massachusetts prosecutors said Petitbois, 25, was expected to be arraigned on a murder charge in Brooklyn on Thursday.

Petitbois was in New York police custody Wednesday night and was unavailable for comment.

The children's mother was speaking to investigators at a police precinct, authorities said. Police said Louna Eveillard had a hand wound but they did not know how she got it. Otherwise, the family was in good health, they said.

After the family took a bus from Boston to New York, the children's mother used a welfare card to buy food, tipping off authorities to her location, the Essex district attorney's office in Massachusetts said. Authorities said the children's parents had lived in Brooklyn previously.

Police in Lynn, Mass., about 15 miles north of Boston, went to the apartment there early Wednesday after receiving a report of a stabbing. They found Greenland Etienne, 33, with stab wounds to her face, and she was pronounced dead a short time later at a hospital.

Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said authorities believe there was a "social" relationship between the family and Etienne, but that link was still being investigated.

Blodgett said Petitbois and Eveillard, 26, came to the United States from Haiti in 1999 through New York, and state and New York City authorities were put on notice. The FBI and immigration authorities also were investigating, Blodgett said.

A man who said he witnessed the slaying told the Boston Herald that Eveillard had gone to her friend Etienne's apartment Tuesday night with her children seeking refuge from Petitbois. Sabinio Stpruex, who said he was a close friend of Etienne, told the newspaper that Petitbois showed up and tried to force Eveillard to leave with him. He said that after Petitbois stabbed Eveillard in the hand, Etienne tried to call 911. That's when Petitbois stabbed Etienne, he said.

"She was trying to help Louna," Stpruex said of Etienne.

A spokesman for the district attorney would not confirm the details of Stpruex's account.

Petitbois did not have a criminal history in the Boston area, authorities said.

The children were identified as Ryan Petitbois, 3; Lyndsey Petitbois, 2; Lauren Petitbois, 22 months; and Roddick Petitbois, 11 months.

Authorities said they were not sure whether Petitbois and Eveillard lived together or what kind of custody arrangement they had for their children.

___ Associated Press writer Denise Lavoie in Boston contributed to this report.
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