The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Nation & World

July 18, 2013

Affidavit: Stab wounds link Omaha homicides

OMAHA, Neb. — Police called in May to an Omaha home where a prominent pathology doctor and his wife had been killed noted striking similarities between the stab wounds on the right side of the victims' necks and those inflicted on an 11-year-old boy and a housekeeper slain five years earlier.

That parity was detailed in an arrest affidavit unsealed Thursday in the case of Dr. Anthony Garcia, who is charged with four counts of first-degree murder and weapons counts in the May deaths, as well as the slayings in 2008.

Police soon discovered it wasn't just the stab wounds that linked the victims.

The slain doctor, Roger Brumback, was the chairman of the Creighton University School of Medicine's pathology department. The boy stabbed to death five years earlier in a nearby neighborhood was the son of a professor who worked closely with Brumback in the same department. That connection led police to research those associated with the department, uncovering another eye-opener — that Hunter and Brumback had fired Garcia from the pathology residence program for "unprofessional conduct" in 2001.

The affidavit was used to support a Nebraska warrant for Garcia, who was arrested Monday in southern Illinois. Nebraska prosecutors say Garcia shot and stabbed Brumback and fatally stabbed Brumback's wife, Mary. Garcia is also charged in the stabbing deaths of 11-year-old Thomas Hunter and his family's housekeeper, Shirlee Sherman.

According to documents that Brumback sent to Indiana medical licensing officials in January, Garcia was fired for trying to sabotage another Creighton resident's efforts to complete his residency. The documents say Garcia called the colleague's wife to needlessly demand that her husband return to the university's pathology department. The wife then tried to contact her husband, who was taking a high-stakes test for his residency at the time.

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