No bail for York Twp. man accused of stabbing wife, mother-in-law after 'snapping'

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch
Nikhil Dev

A York Township man accused of stabbing his wife and mother-in-law in front of his family while they were watching a movie will remain in York County Prison without bail for the foreseeable future.

Nikhil M. Dev, 43, appeared before District Judge Scott Laird on Monday, July 8, for his preliminary hearing, where he stipulated to the allegations in charging documents against him for the purpose of Monday's hearing only.

That meant no testimony was necessary.

The judge then determined enough evidence exists for Dev to stand trial on his charges and forwarded the case to York County Court, setting Dev's formal court arraignment for Aug. 9.

Laird ruled that Dev's no-bail bail status will remain the same and also reaffirmed his prior order that there be no contact whatsoever between Dev, his alleged victims and any witnesses in the case.

The judge then ordered the York County Adult Probation Department to schedule a mental-health evaluation for Dev "as soon as feasibly possible," although the judge noted in court that might still take some time.

Public defender Connor Tarr, who represents Dev, told Laird he expects he could be having "ongoing discussions" with prosecutors, depending on the results of the mental-health evaluation.

Senior deputy prosecutor Justin Roberts said the serious nature of the charges against Dev, as well as the fact that they are domestic violence-related, factored into the judge declining to modify Dev's no-bail status.

Dev remains charged with attempted homicide and two counts each of aggravated assault and simple assault.

Fatal crash: About a month before the attack on Dev's wife, Madhura Dev, and her mother, Nikhil Dev was involved in a fatal crash on Interstate 83.

State police have said Nikhil Dev was driving a Toyota Rav4, with his wife as his passenger, when he struck a GMC Sierra near the Shrewsbury exit (Exit 4) of I-83 on May 24.

Namitha Alicea, 41, of Colonial Beach, Virginia, and her dog were thrown from the Sierra, according to the York County Coroner's Office. Both died on impact, the office said.

Alesander Alicea, the Sierra's driver, was taken to York Hospital for treatment.

The crash remains under investigation, police have said.

More:York Twp. man involved in fatal I-83 crash last month accused of stabbing wife, mother-in-law

Stabbing allegations: Nikhil Dev told police he "snapped" when he stabbed his wife and mother-in-law inside the family's York Township home in the 2700 block of Woodspring Drive on June 1, according to charging documents.

Nikhil Dev started stabbing Madhura Dev in the head, at which point her mother, Sushama Kanitkar, rushed to protect her daughter, causing Nikhil Dev to stab her as well, York Area Regional Police have alleged.

Also in the room at the time were two of the Devs' daughters and a friend of one of the girls, police said.

The women eventually were able to get the knife away from Nikhil Dev and flee the home, according to police.

Madhura Dev suffered a severe wound to her forehead above her left eye and a deep cut to her left forearm, charging documents state, while Kanitkar had deep cuts below her right eye and right index finger, police said.

'Bleeding profusely': Police found the women outside the home "bleeding profusely" and severely injured, according to charging documents. Both were taken to York Hospital for treatment.

Officers arrested Nikhil Dev at gunpoint inside the home, documents state.

He later told officers he felt discomfort in his chest while watching the movie, thought he was "losing it" and started pacing before going into the kitchen and grabbing a knife, charging documents allege.

He admitted walking back into the living room and stabbing Madhura Dev in the head as she sat on their couch, documents state. He also admitted to stabbing his mother-in-law as Kanitkar rushed to protect her daughter, according to police.

Once at the York Area Regional Police station, Nikhil Dev said something "snapped" inside him before he grabbed the knife, documents state.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.