BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Buffalo police announced Wednesday that they have 45-year-old Adam Bennefield in custody.
Bennefield was arraigned Wednesday afternoon on one count of murder in the second degree and three counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
Bennefield was wanted in connection to the Oct. 5 homicide of his estranged wife Keaira Hudson. She was shot and killed while in a vehicle on Shawnee Avenue and Richlawn Avenue. Her three children were in the back seat of the vehicle.
Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia says the department received a tip from the public on Wednesday, which led the investigation to Bissell Avenue where Bennefield was found, ending the week long manhunt.
“They gave us information on the whereabouts of the suspect Adam Bennefield. The Marshalls task force set up surveillance and observed Adam Bennefield on a bicycle,” Commissioner Gramaglia said.
Bennefield allegedly shot Hudson while knowingly in violation of an order of protection. He is scheduled to return to court at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 15. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 25 years to life in prison. He continues to be held without bail.
On Sept. 28, Bennefield allegedly punched and kicked Hudson while inside their Cheektowaga home. Bennefield allegedly took Hudson’s phone, preventing her from calling for help.
Bennefield was arraigned on one count of third-degree assault, two counts of fourth-degree criminal mischief, one count of second-degree menacing, one count of second-degree unlawful imprisonment and one count of second-degree harassment, from the September incident.
Bennefield’s arraignment came on Oct. 4, the day prior to the fatal shooting. He was released on his own recognizance due to the charges qualifying for pre-bail reform.
According to Erie County District Attorney John Flynn, Cheektowaga Police were going to charge Bennefield with harassment after responding to the Sept. 28 call until they saw an eight minute video, which allegedly shows Bennefield beating Hudson, leading to his arrest.
“She literally had almost no injuries at all,” D.A. Flynn said. “When they initially got there, it was only going to be a harassment before they even knew about the video a day later. Again, Cheektowaga PD can’t just charge on optics.”
Hudson had recently been living with her mother and wearing a bulletproof vest because she was in fear of Bennefield, a source told News 4.
Bennefield also served time in prison for kidnapping two women, one of them being his ex-girlfriend, in 2000.
While awaiting trial on Sept. 16, 2000, Bennefield escaped from the Erie County Correctional Facility in Alden by climbing over a 15-foot wall and through razor wire. He surrendered to law enforcement following a19-hour manhunt. He later pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree attempted kidnapping and one count of first-degree escape.
Even with this criminal history, under New York State Bail Reform laws, judges are limited in whether they can set bail. Bennefield was released from custody on Oct. 4, the day before he allegedly killed his wife.
Bennefield was released to supervised patrol in June 2015.
“Charges that have been completely adjudicated where the defendant has committed and served their time, that cannot be used as a factor at all,” D.A. Flynn said.
Pastor Tim Newkirk is speaking for Hudson’s family, who is breathing a little easier now.
“The family is relieved because he’s brought off the streets. He’s not posing any threat or harm to anyone,” Pastor Newkirk said.
Commissioner Gramaglia is thankful for the public’s help in finding Bennefield, who is being held without bail. Bennefield is due back in court Nov. 15.
This is a developing story, check back for updates.