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29-Year-Old Greek-American Mother Murdered in New York

Irene Spantopanagos
Nassau County police are investigating after 29-year-old Greek-American Irene Spantopanagos was stabbed to death in New York on Saturday. Credit: Areti Vlachos, via GoFundMe

New York police are investigating after 29-year-old Greek-American Irene Spantopanagos, who was stabbed to death in an apparent murder-suicide attempt on Saturday.

Authorities say officers from the Nassau County Police Department’s were called to a home on North Manhattan Avenue at about 7:00 p.m. after a reported disturbance. US media reports that Spantopanagos lived only with her 17-month-old daughter, Alessia, whom she had during her brief marriage to 34-year-old Vincent Maiolica, from whom she had separated recently.

When officers arrived at the scene, they found two women — a 22-year-old and Spantopanagos — who had been stabbed by Spantopanagos’ husband.

In video circulating on social media from security camera next door, cries for help are heard as the incident unfolded.

Maiolica attempted to take his own life, police say.

According to US media, the neighbors heard the two women calling for help and alerted the police, who arrived a few minutes, locating the two females and the perpetrator, who was covered in blood.

Police took both the victims and the suspect to a nearby hospital.

Spantopanagos was pronounced dead on Sunday at 10 a.m., while the 22-year-old victim remains in critical condition, and Maiolica having been pronounced dead on Monday.

The motives for the murder of the 29-year-old, who was the only child of the Spantopanagos family, are not yet known.

Irene Spantopanagos’ connection to Greece

In an interview with, Tilos Mayor Maria Kamma said the local community is shocked by the murder of Spantopanagos, who residents remember as frequent visitor to the island as a small child. Her mother, Kalliopi Giannaki, maintains close ties with the island since both her parents were born there.

Kamma said that Spantopanagos was an active member of the Dodecanese Church — and her parents, as well as her grandparents, were very dear to the island.

The Greek community of Long Island, New York was especially touched by the tragic death of Spantopanagos, whose 17-month-old daughter Alessia was baptized a few months ago in St. Paul’s Cathedral in Hempstead, which her mother also attended.

The 29-year-old’s family will gather on Thursday, while the funeral is planned for Friday at 9:30 a.m. at St. Paul’s Cathedral.

GoFundMe started for Spantopanagos’ daughter

Spantopanagos’ relatives have now started a GoFundMe campaign, with the goal of raising $100,000 to cover medical costs and the funeral, as well as the upbringing of the 29-year-old’s daughter, Alessia.

The Greek community’s response to the campaign was immediate, with more than 600 people donating over $56,000, as of March 17.

“Irene’s pure heart and personality touched all who were fortunate enough to know her,” GoFundMe organizer Areti Vlachos said. “Thank you for the love and support you have shown to our family during this horrific time. We appreciate all the love and support that has been given to us. Please pray for all of Irene’s family and friends and especially for her baby girl.”

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