Following is a statement released by Deputy Chief David DeCesare of the Johnston Police Department at about 7 p.m. on Jan. 23. It has been edited to remove graphic details of the crime scene.
Members of the responded to 16 Pershing Rd. at approximately 8:10 pm on Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012 in reference to a report of smoke emanating from the interior of the residence.
Johnston Fire Department personnel responded to the scene to investigate the cause of the smoke. Two young children were evacuated from the house and were transported to Hasbro Children’s Hospital to be evaluated for smoke inhalation.
Officers on scene attempted to gather information from the resident/father of the above mentioned children who was identified as Donald Greenslit. Greenslit appeared unfazed that he had left his young children unattended in the smoke-filled residence.
He also refused to provide any information on the whereabouts of the children’s mother or provide a way for police to contact her. Greenslit prohibited fire personnel from performing their duty by yelling at them to leave and continually entered the residence in an attempt to get them to leave. He was placed under arrest for obstructing police/fire personnel in the execution of their duty and was transported to headquarters.
The source of smoke was identified as a fireplace located in the basement of the residence and an obstructed chimney caused smoke to billow into the residence. Johnston Fire Department personnel discovered unidentifiable charred and burned remains wrapped in burnt cloth resting directly in front of the fireplace.
Also visible was a bone, approximately 10 inches in length, which appeared to have been cut with a saw type tool.
There were [other remains] discovered when Johnston Fire Department personnel were trying to ensure that the fire had been completely extinguished.
Personnel from the Medical Examiner’s office did respond to the scene and determined that the remains could quite possibly be human remains, at which time the residence was secured by police personnel.
As of this time, Greenslit’s girlfriend, the mother of the two children located in the residence, has not been located or accounted for. Donald Greenslit to include at least three domestic arrests occurring in Johnston. There is an active No-Contact order in effect between Greenslit and his girlfriend. The girlfriend was the complainant.
At Johnston Police headquarters, Greenslit was advised of his constitutional rights and questioned as to the whereabouts of his girlfriend. Donald Greenslit willingly confessed to stabbing and killing his girlfriend in the couple’s home.
Greenslit’s statement was obtained by Det. James Brady, lead detective in the case. Greenslit described to Det. Brady how he stabbed his girlfriend after she allegedly attacked him with a knife, and later dismembered her body and burned it in the basement fireplace.
The investigation is still on going and charges are still being compiled. Greenslit is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday at 3rd District Court in Warwick, RI.