Brother of late WWE star Ashley Massaro killed in Manhattan stabbing

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Tuesday, December 1, 2020

MIDTOWN, Manhattan (WABC) -- The victim in a stabbing in New York City last month has been identified as the 39-year-old brother of late World Wrestling Entertainment star Ashley Massaro.

Police said Ronald Massaro was stabbed around 9:15 p.m. on Saturday, November 21, at the corner of West 38th Street and Eighth Avenue in Midtown.

The Smithtown resident was found unconscious and unresponsive with stab wounds to his torso.

He was rushed to NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue, where he was pronounced dead at 9:40 p.m.

According to police, 52-year-old Lawrence Downing, of Midtown, was arrested on November 22 and charged with second-degree murder.

It was unclear if the attack was targeted or random in nature.

Anyone with information is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

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Ashley Massaro, who also competed on the reality show "Survivor," was found dead in her Long Island home in May of 2019.

Suffolk County police responded to a call of a sick or injured person in Smithtown and found her body just 10 days before her 40th birthday.

The medical examiner did not release an official cause of death, but authorities say it was determined to be non-criminal in nature.

Massaro gained fame by winning the WWE's "2005 Raw Diva Search," and she stayed with the WWE for three years before cutting ties.

In 2007, she competed on "Survivor: China," but she was voted off in the second episode. She also was featured as the April 2007 cover model on Playboy magazine.

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