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Jury finds defendant guilty of murder in cold case homicide


Wed, Oct 12th 2022 09:15 am

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn on Tuesday announced a jury found 63-year-old John M. Sauberan of Buffalo guilty of one count of murder in the second degree (class “A-I” felony). Jurors rendered a decision in the afternoon after three hours of deliberation following a five-day trial, convicting the defendant of the only charge in the indictment against him.

The DA’s office stated, “On the morning of Wednesday, Feb. 8, 1978, the defendant entered the victim’s home, which was located in the rear of a property on the 100 block of Pooley Place in the City of Buffalo. Once inside, the defendant intentionally caused the death of 19-year-old Linda Tschari by stabbing her multiple times.

“The victim’s brother, who lived in the front house of the west side property, went to check on his sister later that day. The victim was found deceased in the living room.”

Sauberan was linked to the crime through DNA evidence after his profile was uploaded to a national database following a criminal conviction in another state. Prosecutors found no evidence that the defendant was known to the victim.

Sauberan faces a maximum of 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced before Erie County Court Judge Sheila A. DiTullio on Tuesday, Dec. 13. He continues to be held without bail.

“The family of Linda Tschari has waited more than 44 years for her murder to be solved. I hope that they feel justice has been served by this defendant being found guilty today,” Flynn said.

He commended Det. Mary Evans, Det. John Paradowski, Det. Leo McGarth and the other members of the Buffalo Police Department “who have diligently worked for decades to solve this crime.” Flynn also lauded the forensic biologists at the Erie County Central Police Services Laboratory “for their crucial work on this case.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Ashley M. Morgan of the homicide bureau and Assistant District Attorney Ryan M. Flaherty of the felony trials bureau.

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