A domestic incident Dec. 6 at an Orchard Park home was one hint of trouble in the relationship between Ruby Stiglmeier and her boyfriend, David Lewczyk.
They were discovered in the home late Tuesday night, dead from gunshot wounds in a murder-suicide, police said.
A relative of Stiglmeier went to the Queens Place home about 9:30 p.m. to check on her, and found her body along with that of Lewczyk “within a couple paces of each other in the bedroom,” said Orchard Park Police Chief Mark F. Pacholec.
Lewczyk shot Stiglmeier three times before shooting himself once, Pacholec said at a late-afternoon news conference.
“They had been dating on and off for approximately two years,” he said.
Police were still trying to determine what precipitated the fatal shootings but revealed they had been called to the one-story ranch house in December to deal with a domestic situation.
Lewczyk, 53, of Panama, went to Stiglmeier’s home on Dec. 6 “angry,” police said. He was accused of stealing some property, destroying other property and setting a small fire in the garage, Pacholec said.
Queens Place is on the west side of town, running off Route 20A, and is near Ralph Wilson Stadium.
Stiglmeier, 51, reported the incident to police the next day and Lewczyk turned himself in Jan. 19 on a warrant. He was facing a felony charge of third-degree criminal mischief and two misdemeanors, petit larceny and fifth-degree arson. A felony hearing was held March 15 and he was due in court on April 26 for further proceedings.
Stiglmeier had requested a “refrain from” order of protection against Lewczyk, which allowed the couple to have contact but required that they be cordial with each other, police said.
“It’s basically, ‘You will behave,’ ” Pacholec said. “It’s a judicial order, if you violate that, it becomes an additional charge.”
Police said Lewczyk had a permit for the pistol that was used in the shootings. He had no known criminal record prior to the Dec. 6 incident, Pacholec said.
“At this point, we are fairly confident it is a murder-suicide, but the investigation is continuing,” he said.
Stiglmeier worked as a dental hygienist in the office of Dr. Kathleen G. Kane on Quaker Road in Orchard Park.
“Her patients loved her,” said a co-worker, who did not want to be identified.
Stiglmeier had worked for Kane for more than 20 years in the small office, which has a staff of five. She had been working two days a week for the last six years or so.
Stiglmeier’s co-worker described the staff as shocked and herself as numb after hearing about Stiglmeier’s death.
“We’re just trying to put the pieces together,” she said.
She described Stiglmeier as an outgoing, friendly person who was also quiet. She was athletic and enjoyed life. Stiglmeier also was the rock for her family as they dealt with the recent deaths of both her parents, the co-worker said.
“She was just a genuine person,” she said.
Neighbors said Stiglmeier had lived on the street since about 2010.
Richard Kuske lives across the street and knew the couple just in passing. They seemed to be nice people, he said.
Kuske, who has lived on Queens Place for 34 years, described the neighborhood as extremely quiet. He said he was shocked to learn about what happened.
Pacholec said police are awaiting the full autopsy and toxicology reports, which could take between six and eight weeks.
Police also requested that anyone who had contact with Stiglmeier or Lewczyk in person, electronically or on the phone in the days leading up to the shootings to contact them at 662-6444 and ask to speak to a detective.
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