Just days before heading overseas a US Army Sergeant was accused of killing a Hudson Valley father on New Year's Day.

Over the weekend, New York State Police accused a US Army Sergeant of killing a man in the Hudson Valley.

New York State Police Investigating Town of Plattekill, New York Homicide


On Jan. 2, 2023, New York State Police from the Highland barracks responded to Campbell Drive Extension in the town of Plattekill for a report of a person deceased outside a residence.

The victim, 41-year-old Daniel Spotards was found outside his Ulster County home with multiple gunshot wounds, police say. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

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White, Venuto and Morrill Funeral
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Spotards was born in Poughkeepsie, New York in 1981 but was a lifelong Plattkill resident, according to his obituary.

He was a graphics automotive technician with LUXURYAUTOWRAPZ located in Plattekill.

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US Army Sergeant From Newburgh, New York Accused Of Murder In Plattekill, New York

Chuck Hagel Delivers Commencement Address At West Point
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On March 7, 2023, members of the New York State Police - Troop F Bureau of Criminal of Investigation (BCI) and the United States Army Criminal Investigation Division 29-year-old Junando Dawkins of Newburgh with murder and criminal possession of a weapon.

Dawkins is accused of killing Spotards on Jan. 1, 2023. Police didn't go into details about how the investigation led to the murder charge.

Dawkins, a US Army Sergeant, was arrested at the United States Army base in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, just days prior to deploying overseas.

"The investigation was conducted by the Troop F BCI and the Ulster County District Attorney’s Office. The New York State Police would like to thank the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office and the New York City Police Department for their assistance with the investigation," New York State Police stated in a press release.

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Dawkins was remanded to the Ulster County Jail without bail.

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Did you know that Lucille Ball made her stage debut in the Hudson Valley? How about Philadelphia Cream Cheese wasn't invented in Philadelphia, but in Orange County? Or that a mansion in Dutchess County inspired the expression "keeping up with the Joneses?" Find out about those and over 100 other fun facts about the Hudson Valley. 

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