During Easter Weekend in 2006, a frantic 911 call led the authorities to the Ahwatukee, Arizona, home of Adam Kostewicz and Grace Pianka. Inside, the police found Adam’s bullet-riddled body, but Grace was nowhere to be seen. The second half of Investigation Discovery’s ‘Deadly Affairs: Betrayed By Love: Taking A Swing at Murder’ delves into the circumstances surrounding Adam’s murder and what led the authorities to his wife, Grace. So, if you’re curious about the same, here’s what we know.
Who is Grace Pianka?
Grace Pianka, a Polish woman, arrived in the USA with her young son many years prior. She then met Adam Kostewicz, who was also a Polish immigrant. He had arrived in the country when he was only 20-years-old. The two immediately hit it off upon meeting at a gym in Detroit and got married in 1996 after spending nine years together. A year into their marriage, the happy family settled into a comfortable life in the Arizona foothills, with Adam raising Grace’s son, Victor, as his own. The couple was living the American dream, with Grace working in real estate and Adam being employed as a computer engineer.
However, by the time 2006 rolled around, things weren’t the same. It seemed like Adam was distant and spent much more time outside the house than inside. While Grace and Adam had disagreements regarding Victor’s trouble with the law, she never realized what was in store for her later. Sometime after 10 pm on April 15, 2006, a woman called 911 from Adam and Grace’s home; she had found Adam dead in the bedroom.
The authorities arrived to see Adam on the floor in a pool of blood. He had been shot in the head, shoulder, and back. However, it wasn’t Grace who made the call; it was someone named Virginia “Jen” McIntyre. Jen told the police that she had met Adam on a website for married people to have an affair. According to Jen, she met Adam earlier in the day at a hotel, and the two had resolved to leave their respective partners and start a life together. He went at around 6:30 pm to pack up a few things and talk to Grace about their marriage ending.
Following that, Jen said they had decided to meet at a hotel. However, she never heard back from Adam again. Jen met her husband at a restaurant around that time but didn’t find the courage to tell him about the affair. By 9:30 pm, Jen, who was at the hotel, was worried about Adam. Soon, she drove to Adam’s house only to find him dead. The authorities later learned that a .38-caliber gun killed Adam, and the same model was missing from his extensive gun collection.
The following morning, Grace was located more than 100 miles away, passed out in her car. She tried to kill herself by overdosing on aspirin. The authorities then learned that on the morning of April 15, Adam had abruptly left home after getting a call from a woman. According to Grace’s neighbor, Grace followed Adam and saw him in a car with a woman. Suspecting her husband was cheating, she withdrew all the money from their savings account and spent the afternoon drinking wine and tequila.
Grace had also admitted to arguing with Adam that evening when he returned, adding there was some shoving and hitting involved. A neighbor said he heard a smoke alarm go off at Grace and Adam’s house at around 7 pm on April 15 and went to investigate. He remembered seeing Grace backing out of the driveway in her car, and she seemed to be crying. The authorities believed Grace killed Adam in a fit of rage after finding out about the affair.
Where is Grace Pianka Today?
The investigators had also found a .38-caliber cartridge in Grace’s purse, but the murder weapon was never located. In August 2008, then 51, she stood trial for murder. Jen, who was supposed to testify, suddenly disappeared with her husband. In the end, the trial ended with a hung jury, with Grace being tried again six months later. The defense pointed in Jen’s direction, saying she was motivated by money.
Jen had become Adam’s estate’s administrator about five months after the murder but never paid the mortgage on the house. But in the second trial, the jury believed there was enough to convict Grace of second-degree murder. She was then sentenced to 13 years behind bars in April 2009. Prison records indicate that Grace was released in March 2019. From what we can tell, she lives in Goose Creek, South Carolina, but has understandably maintained a low profile.