Royersford Man Found Guilty of First-Degree Murder in Ex-Girlfriend’s Killing

Danelo CavalcanteDanelo Cavalcante /Submitted Image

WEST CHESTER, PA — On Thursday, a Chester County jury convicted Danelo Cavalcante, 34, of Royersford, PA, of first-degree murder for fatally stabbing his 33-year-old former girlfriend, Deborah Brandao, at her residence in Schuylkill Township, Chester County on April 18, 2021. The victim’s then 7-year-old and 4-year-old children were present during the murder. He will be sentenced at a later date.

“This was a senseless tragedy that has impacted countless people due to the defendant’s cold, calculated, and heinous actions, stated Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan. “Ms. Brandao’s children are now left motherless and she will never have the opportunity to watch her children grow up, finish school, or have families of their own. Her 9-year-old daughter had the courage to testify in this case and helped obtain justice for her mother and their family. We are extremely grateful for Chester County Detectives, Schuylkill Township Police Department, witnesses, and the jury for this just outcome.”

According to the information presented in court, on April 18, 2021, at approximately 4:17 p.m., Schuylkill Township Police were dispatched to 337 Pawlings Road for the report of a domestic disturbance. Upon arrival, police witnessed the victim on the ground outside a residence with multiple stab wounds to the chest. A neighbor had attempted life-saving measures until emergency services arrived. The victim was immediately transported to Paoli Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Investigators later learned that the victim’s children were outside with their mother when the defendant, the victim’s ex-boyfriend, arrived at the residence, grabbed the victim’s hair, threw her to the ground, and stabbed her 38 times in virtually every vital organ including her heart, kidney, lungs, and liver, causing her to bleed to death.

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During the attack, the victim’s child ran for help and neighbors attempted to assist. The defendant fled the scene prior to police arriving but was arrested hours later after police tracked him in Virginia.

Investigators later learned about a history of domestic violence where the defendant assaulted and threatened to kill the victim during other incidents. When the victim learned that the defendant had an open warrant for a serious criminal matter in Brazil, she threatened to expose him to the police. Detectives determined that this was the motive for the murder.

Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan commented the Chester County Detectives and Schuylkill Township Police Department for the investigation which led to the successful prosecution of Danelo Cavalcante. Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan and ADAs Zachary Yurick and Monica Szyszkiewicz are the assigned prosecutors.

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