New York Man Sentenced to 18 Years for Killing Sister Engaged in ‘Witchcraft’

WATERTOWN, N.Y. — A New York man, who fatally stabbed his sister alleging her to be a witch, has been sentenced to a minimum of 18 years in prison. Anthony Dibella, 53, from the town of Lyme, was handed down the sentence on Wednesday in Jefferson County Court for the murder that took place on April 28, 2022.

Court records reveal that Dibella repeatedly attacked his sister, 67-year-old Wanda Paoli, with a bayonet blade and an awl, targeting her head, neck, and face. Dibella, who shared a home with Paoli and their 89-year-old mother on Point Peninsula, claimed that his sister was obstructing his communication with God and accused her of practicing witchcraft.

The chilling details of the crime came to light when Jefferson County dispatchers received a call from a man identifying himself as Tony. The caller reported that Wanda Paoli was being killed because she was a witch and was currently on the porch of their home at 6782 Failing Shores Lane. Upon arrival, authorities discovered Paoli’s lifeless body on the porch and found their elderly mother unharmed inside the house.

Dibella was subsequently arrested and charged with second-degree murder as well as two counts of fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon. He pleaded guilty to the murder charge on July 19. Court documents also revealed that Dibella had called the police himself to report the crime.

Further investigation into the case revealed a disturbing mindset. Dibella reportedly told the police, “I had to do what I did to her because she was getting in the way of me communicating to God.” He also expressed his frustration about people worshipping earthly elements instead of God.

The court documents also included a statement from Dibella’s brother, Russell Dibella, who resides in Texas. He reported that Anthony had confessed to the crime over the phone, stating, “I killed her,” and “I stabbed her in the head.” Anthony Dibella is currently being held without bail in the county jail.