Niagara Gazette

Crime

April 30, 2014

Falls homicide suspect made statement to cops

Niagara Gazette — The suspect in the Falls’ first homicide of 2014 spoke to police after the murder.

But neither police nor prosecutors will talk about what she told them.

Investigators said Ashley Marie Berger was still at the scene of the slaying when they arrived early Sunday morning. But they have declined to discuss the contents of her statement.

Detectives have also said they will not speak on a possible motive for the murder.

Berger, 31, 615 Third St., has pleaded not guilty to a charge of second-degree murder in the stabbing death of Richard Christian, 22, whose last known address was on Caravelle Drive. She is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Friday in Falls City Court.

Prosecutors have said they do not expect that hearing to take place and anticipate the case will go to a Niagara County grand jury. Burger is currently being held without bail at the Niagara County jail.

She is accused of stabbing Christian to death at a motel in the 400 block of Main Street early Sunday morning.

Police said they were called to the Rodeway Inn Motel, at about 2:56 a.m., and found Christian with a single stab wound to his chest.

“The officers found him outside the motel room, on the ground in a pool of blood,” Falls Police Detective Lt. Mike Trane said. “We believe he was stabbed inside the room and then went outside and collapsed.”

Trane said Berger was still at the motel, which is near her home, when patrol officers got there.

Christian was rushed to Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center. He was pronounced dead a short time later.

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