Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Bag of Tricks: The Murder of Roland Kuster

Back to the Morgue

An autopsy was conducted on Kuster two days after he died. The medical examiner found blunt force trauma to Kuster's head and left shoulder counted 13 stab wounds by a non-serrated blade.

Harry Klann examines evidence
Harry Klann examines evidence

Ten of Kuster's stab wounds were in his neck and two of them cut the jugular vein. Some of the cuts were caused by a shallow, slashing motion that cut just the skin. Others went through the muscle. The deepest was 1-1/2 inches.

Kuster was also stabbed in the chest, back, shoulder and arm. It appeared that he fought off his attacker by raising his right hand, which was sliced, along with his forearm. His nose was also broken.

Perhaps the most interesting element was that Kuster clutched a lock of hair that was turned over to criminalists for processing.

Based on the wounds, detectives surmised the following: the killer confronted Kuster in his bedroom, smashing him in the back and over the head with the figurine and pummeling his face with a fist. Then a frenzied knife attack occurred that Kuster feebly tried to ward off. All of the wounds occurred while he was still alive.



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