One of the men accused of stabbing and killing Jacquelyn Porreca at a Colonie salon last year admitted to the murder this morning, Albany County District Attorney’s officials said.
Michael Chmielewski, 24, of Colonie, pleaded guilty in Albany County Court to one count of first-degree murder in connection with Porreca’s Aug. 21, 2015 killing.
In exchange for his plea, Chmielewski is to receive 22 years to life in state prison at his November sentencing. Had he been convicted after trial, Chmielewski would have faced up to life in prison without parole.
Chmielewski admitted to entering Recycled Salon, 52 Sand Creek Road, Colonie that day intending to commit a robbery. In the course of that robbery, he stabbed the hair stylist, Porreca. Porreca, 32, of Colonie, died of her injuries two days later.
Charges against the man accused of driving Chmielewski, 33-year-old fellow Colonie resident Sean Moreland, remain pending.
Authorities have said Chmielewski stabbed Porreca twice in the neck at about 3:30 p.m. as she worked alone.
Police responded to find her in front of the salon being tended to by neighbors and passing motorists who had stopped to help.
Police have said after stabbing Porreca, Chmielewski stole between $500 and $800. Police have said he and Moreland worked together to take the money so they could use it buy heroin.
Police have said they do not believe either man knew Porreca personally, but Chmielewski lived near the salon.
Police arrested the two in November 2015 after a lengthy investigation. Police identified the two as possible suspects early on, but ultimately a witness tip helped bring the case together.
The witness told police that the two provided information that suggested they were involved, police said after their arrest.
Police overall said they believed they built the case based on surveillance footage, license plate data, cell phone records and witness interviews.
Judge Thomas A. Breslin presided over Monday’s plea. Chief Assistant District Attorney David M. Rossi prosecuted.
Reach Gazette reporter Steven Cook at 395-3122, [email protected] or @ByStevenCook on Twitter.
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Categories: News, Schenectady County