Fairfax police use dogs, copter to find suspect in roommate killing

November 30, 2012

After a search with a helicopter and dogs Friday, Fairfax County police apprehended a Franconia man and charged him with murder in the slaying of his roommate earlier in the day.

Eric C. Kweder, 34, is accused of killing the 32-year-old victim by striking him with a blunt object inside the home they shared in the 6000 block of Hydrangea Drive and then fleeing the scene, said Officer Bud Walker, a police spokesman.

Officers arrived at the townhouse about 10:20 a.m. after an unidentified person placed a call about someone in medical distress at the address, Walker said. Officers found the roommate’s body inside the home.

The man’s identity was being withheld pending notification of next of kin. Police also declined to discuss the motive in the killing or where in the house the victim’s body was found.

Kweder was apprehended about 2:30 p.m. less than five miles from the scene, Walker said.

Tips from the public were instrumental in capturing him, Walker said.

Mary Keane, a neighbor, said three men, including Kweder, lived in the townhouse.

She said she had seen Kweder and his roommate Andy Yu, whom property records list as the homeowner, arguing in the past.

“Yu was out front and talking with him in a very strong manner, saying, ‘No one wants to live with you,’ ” Keane said.

She said that Kweder was fond of polishing a blue Mustang he owned.

Pablo Alvizuri, another neighbor, said he was friends with Yu and regularly spent time at the house. He said he thought that all three roommates got along fairly well but that there had been tensions between Yu and Kweder over rent.

Kweder’s relatives declined to comment, but a high school friend and former roommate, Christopher Hendrix-Buxton, said he was shocked by Kweder’s arrest.

He described Kweder as an avid runner who was named a Washington Post All-Met athlete at Edison High School in the mid-1990s. Hendrix-Buxton said Kweder served in the Marines and had recently been working for UPS.

Hendrix-Buxton said Kweder had also recently revealed to him a diagnosis of a mental illness.

“I’ve known him since high school, and this is not something he would ever do,” said Hendrix-Buxton.

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