A relationship with a history of abuse ended when a man allegedly brutally strangled his ad executive girlfriend to death while he was inebriated, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.
Police arrested Jason Bohn, a lawyer who received his master’s degree from Columbia University, at 8 p.m. on June 29 in a White Plains diner while accompanied by his mother and lawyer Todd Greenberg. He was arraigned for the alleged killing of Danielle Thomas, 27, and charged on June 30 with second-degree murder, aggravated criminal contempt, first-degree criminal contempt and tampering with physical evidence.
Officers at the 114th Precinct received a phone call allegedly from Bohn, 33, on June 26 asking for them to check on an unconscious woman in the apartment at 28-25 33 St. in Astoria which the couple shared. Bohn allegedly said he did not call 911 because he was out of the area. Some media sources reported he had fled to Florida.
“The body was discovered on Tuesday after Bohn allegedly called the precinct. It is believed that Ms. Thomas had died prior to that day. I cannot, however, confirm when exactly she died,” a spokesman for the DA’s office, Kevin Ryan, said in an email.
When officers arrived at the apartment at about 7:30 p.m., they found Thomas’ body laying face up in a bathtub surrounded by bags of ice, according to the DA’s Office. Thomas had bruising on her forehead, face, shoulders and chest; broken cartilage and compressions in her neck; several fractures to all sides of her rib cage; and a lacerated liver.
Medics arrived and pronounced her dead at the scene, according to police.
Officers also found two handwritten notes that allegedly said “It was an accident, it was accident, it was an accident ... I had been drinking and I was drunk when I got home ... she was already asleep ... I woke up and there was fighting between us ... When I woke up again she was unconscious ... I am sorry.” The second note allegedly said “Dani, I will love you forever.”
Thomas moved into Bohn’s Astoria apartment in March and landed a job as an ad executive at Weight Watchers. They met last fall at a football game at the University of Florida, where Thomas studied business and where Bohn received his law degree.
Bohn had allegedly beaten Thomas before. On June 7 Thomas went to the 114th Precinct to report an incident on May 24, in which Bohn had allegedly punched Thomas in the face, leaving two black eyes, and knocked her to the ground causing injury to her knee which forced her to use crutches to walk.
While she was at the police station Bohn allegedly called her and said, “It’s war. I’ll dedicate my life to hunting you down like a dog in the street. I am going to make your life impossible.”
He was charged with assault and aggravated harassment and told to return to court on July 11. Thomas was given a temporary protective order.
Since her death and before her Facebook page was taken down, friends posted comments about Thomas’ sweet nature. Her friend Rachel Rotella, whom Thomas reportedly visited after the May 24 incident, posted a picture of the two of them shortly after the killing.
Friends also started a community page, Justice for Danielle, where friends added childhood photos and shared their thoughts about the alleged murder. The page accumulated 1,416 “likes” in the week since its start.
“Danielle was a true friend. She was beyond friendly, beyond caring, and beyond uplifting,” Katrina Constantine posted.
“She had a lot of friends, and she somehow made everyone feel like they were her best friend. She never talked bad about any of her friends and just made everyone feel special,” Rebekah Campbell posted.
Despite his Ivy-league education the Bronx man’s childhood was marked with abuse. Bohn wrote an essay for the Jewish Child Care Association talking about his drug addicted, abusive father.
According to a New York Times article about law students and their student loans in which Bohn was interviewed, he stated that he grew up as a ward of the State of New York.
Bohn is held without bail and will be back in court on July 5. DA reports state he was put on suicide watch. Bohn faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted.