Robert Dapolito of New Sharon shot and killed his domestic partner, Jessica Dapolito, on Monday before turning the gun on himself, police said. Facebook photo

NEW SHARON — Maine State Police say that a New Sharon man who shot and killed his domestic partner before taking his own life on Monday is “most likely related” to a man who is serving a 55-year sentence for killing his wife in Limington in 2010.

It would be the third domestic violence murder connected to the families. The parents of the woman who died Monday also died in a murder-suicide.

State police say Robert Dapolito, 55, of New Sharon killed his longtime domestic partner, Jessica Dapolito, 42, in their Hovey Road residence. A state trooper and a Franklin County deputy discovered the bodies after being called to do a welfare check Monday.

The couple were in relationship for about 23 years but never married, according to Jessica Dapolito’s aunt, Suzanne Bourque of Biddeford. She said her niece took her partner’s last name.

Jessica Dapolito’s parents – Thomas and Michelle Masse – died in a murder-suicide, on Jan. 9, 2018, at their house in Temple.

Autopsies on Thomas Masse, 60, and his wife, Michelle, 59, showed each died from a gunshot wound to the head, state police said at the time.

In 2012, Patrick Dapolito was sentenced to 55 years in prison for shooting and killing his wife, Kelly Winslow, 30, at their home in Limington in March 2010, according to published reports. Patrick Dapolito was 39 at that time.

Patrick Dapolito, now 50, is serving that sentence at the Maine State Prison and is not eligible for release until 2059.

“We can confirm that they are most likely related,” Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Katy England said of Patrick and Robert Dapolito in an email Tuesday. Police “are still investigating and exploring their familial relationship,” she said.

Robert J. Dapolito and Jessica Dapolito are listed in tax information in the 2013 Farmington annual town report.

Robert and Patrick were brothers, according to multiple posts on their respective Facebook pages, and family photos on Robert Dapolito’s page show the two men together at what appear to be family gatherings.

In 2012, Robert – known as Bob – posted, “Pat, you are my brother and believe you are innocent of this hideous charge, and to those that believe differently don’t know you. To all the haters and non believers, they may as well delete me from their profile, as well as yours. I love you and can’t wait till you are with us again. Dunkin and Mc Ds on me. I love you, stay strong, and know your family is behind you. You will be vindicated soon. I Love You!”

Patrick Dapolito is serving a 55-year sentence for murdering his wife, Kelly Winslow, 30, in 2010. He will be eligible for release in 2059. Maine State Prison photo

During his murder trial Patrick Dapolito offered testimony recounting the day of his wife’s killing, telling the court that after discovering his wife’s body he had reached out to his father, who lives in Florida. He didn’t tell his father that Winslow was dead, but it was clear that Patrick Dapolito was distraught, so his brother came to the house. Patrick Dapolito testified that, without telling his brother that Winslow was dead, he put Winslow’s body in his brother’s truck and drove the truck north to Upton, a small rural town in northern Oxford County on the New Hampshire border. He he hid her body there.

But according to an affidavit by state police Detective Mark Holmquist in support of a murder charge, in the days following Winslow’s murder Patrick Dapolito told police he called his brother, Robert J. Dapolito, and asked him to bring his truck to Limington from his home in New Sharon.

When Patrick Dapolito showed his brother the body, he said, his brother “freaked out,” but Dapolito forced him to help load the body into the truck. Patrick Dapolito also took two bags of bloody clothing and towels to the truck and put the gun in the cab, according to the affidavit.

Patrick Dapolito took Winslow’s body to his parents’ property in Upton. Authorities later found the body under a tarp weighted down with pieces of wood.

“I promised her I’d be back in three days,” Dapolito testified, according to Portland Press Herald coverage of the trial.

According to police, as reported by the Portland Press Herald at the time, the day after Winslow was killed, Patrick Dapolito drove to his brother’s house but his brother refused to take the pickup back because the bed was covered with blood.

When police later searched Robert Dapolito’s truck, they found blood in it and a 9 mm Parabellum semiautomatic pistol in the cab.

According to the affidavit, Patrick Dapolito also told police that he had forgotten to leave the bags of bloody clothing with the body, so he burned them in a wood stove at his brother’s house, where the burned clothes were later found by police.

While Patrick testified that he hadn’t told his father about Winslow’s death, according to the police affidavit he did tell his father about the shooting and that the gun “just went off.”

The newlyweds had been scheduled to fly to Florida the following day to visit the elder Dapolito, and he suggested Patrick make the trip anyway and the two men would drive back to Maine together. The father also suggested to his son “not to do anything stupid,” according to the affidavit.

On the one-year anniversary of Winslow’s death, Robert and Jessica Dapolito each posted loving comments in her memory on Robert’s Facebook page. Jessica posted: “She was the most patient, loving, and caring sister in law. Love you dearly and are missed tremendously!!!”

The elder Robert Dapolito still lives in Florida. Their mother, Margaret Dapolito, died in 2017. Her obituary did not name her adult children, but referred to them only as “her two sons who she affectionately referred to as ‘nitro’ and ‘glycerin.'”

Robert and Jessica Dapolito owned two pieces of property on Hovey Road, including more than 42 acres worth just over $87,000, according to New Sharon tax records, and a home assessed at close to $16,000.

He was originally from Farmington. She was originally from Biddeford.

The couple supported the work of Spurwink and appeared multiple times in the agency’s annual report as contributors of services in kind.

Robert Dapolito is listed on the National Provider Identifier Registry as a service provider of a residential facility that provides habilitation services and other care and treatment to adults or children diagnosed with developmental and intellectual disabilities and are not able to live independently. The listing, which is showing active, was last updated in 2007.

The couple had provided services at their home on Blackberry Lane in New Sharon. That home, where the couple lived with Robert’s two children and a 21-year-old mentally disabled foster son, was destroyed by fire in 2004.

According to Jessica Dapolito’s family, the couple stopped providing services for Spurwink about five years ago.

Executive Editor Judith Meyer contributed to this report.

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