Pasco Crime Report: Arrest made in fatal October U.S. 19 crash

Pasco Sheriff’s deputies arrested Stephanie Wykel, 30, after she chased her boyfriend with a knife across six lanes of U.S. 19 traffic last week.

Arrest in fatal October crash

HUDSON – The Florida Highway Patrol made an arrest last week related to a fatal and fiery traffic accident last October.

Troopers arrested 29-year-old Donald Patenaude when they located him at 12724 Litewood Drive in Hudson. Patenaude, a Spring Hill resident, was arrested for obstruction and DUI manslaughter related to the Oct. 25 accident that killed 31-year-old Spring Hill resident Paul Thomas Mello. Toxicology results indicated Patenaude was under the influence of marijuana and had a blood-alcohol content of 0.136. Individuals are considered to be illegally driving under the influence with a BAC at or greater than 0.08.

The Oct. 25 accident occurred on U.S. Highway 19 shortly before midnight just north of Tower Drive in Hudson. Mello was riding a 2008 Kawasaki Ninja motorcycle southbound on U.S. 19 in the left turn lane. Mello attempted a U-turn and entered the path of Patenaude. After the collision, Mello’s motorcycle became lodged under Patenaude’s 1997 Ford SUV and both vehicles caught fire. Mello was transported to an area hospital and died later. Neither Patenaude nor his 30-year-old passenger, Rachel McGuire, were injured in the accident.

Woman chases man across U.S. 19

HUDSON – A woman who suspected unfaithfulness from boyfriend was arrested last week after chasing him across U.S. Highway 19 with a knife.

Pasco County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested 30-year-old Hudson resident Stephanie Wykel for domestic aggravated assault March 19. According to the case’s affidavit, Wykel chased the victim across six lanes of U.S. 19 traffic the afternoon of the arrest. Wykel and her boyfriend have a child together and Wykel told deputies she suspected he was cheating. The boyfriend would not answer questions or show her his phone when the boyfriend began walking away. Wykel is accused of grabbing a medium-sized knife from the kitchen and chasing after the victim “trying to scare him” so he would answer questions and show her his phone.

Man attacks, threatens wife

BAYONET POINT – A 78-year-old husband was arrested March 17 for attacking and threatening his 81-year-old wife at their Bayonet Point home.

The victim told deputies her husband, Kenneth George Cholak, entered the bathroom put his hands around her throat while she was sitting on the toilet. The victim reported Cholak shook her back and forth yelling at her that it was “all her fault.” The victim told Cholak to stop several times before he ceased choking and shaking her. Cholak then pulled a pair of trimming scissors from the bathroom sink drawer and told the victim, “before the day is done, I will stab you to death.” Cholak also told the victim, “you are not going to church today; you are a hostage for the day.”

After Cholak settled back into his chair, the victim got dressed and fled the residence through the bedroom sliding glass door and ran away on foot.

Deputies report observing three half-inch red marks on the right side of the victim’s neck, consistent with a finger pattern, and one red mark behind her left ear.

The couple has been married for 45 years.

Sexual battery on minor

HUDSON – Pasco Sheriff’s deputies arrested Brian Casey Alvarez, 51, on March 14 for having sex multiple times with a 14-year-old girl who became pregnant.

Police reports state that Alvarez engaged in multiple sexual acts between October 2018 and February 2019.

The victim told investigators that she went to Alvarez and asked if she could “experiment,” meaning have consensual sex, because she wanted to have a baby. The victim told investigators she had sex approximately 10 times with Alvarez and allowed investigators to look at text messages on her phone. The texts had multiple sexual videos from the victim to the defendant as well as multiple vulgar messages with sexual content, indicating there was a sexual relationship between the victim and Alvarez.

The police report stated the victim “appears to be pregnant,” but has not seen a medical professional in over a year.

Alvarez denied all allegations and said he never touched the victim. Informed of the texts, Alvarez did say it was his phone number associated with the messages and he is the only one using his phone with that number.