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David Salasky pleads guilty to the murder of New Castle County Police Lieutenant Joseph Szczerba

Criminal Division | Department of Justice | Department of Justice Press Releases | Date Posted: Monday, September 30, 2013



Wilmington – Attorney General Beau Biden announced that David Salasky pled guilty today to the September 2011 death of New Castle County Police officer Joseph Szczerba.

“This guilty plea in New Castle County Superior Court brings us closer to concluding a tragic and painful chapter for Delaware law enforcement and for our entire community,” Biden said.  “David Salasky’s plea of guilty but mentally ill recognizes that he is criminally responsible for the murder of Lieutenant Joseph Szczerba, and that Salasky is chronically and seriously mentally ill.  This resolution – the finality of a conviction and the certainty of a life sentence – is in the best interest of justice and it allows the Szczerba family, the New Castle County Police, and us all to move forward with healing and continuing to honor the memory of Joseph Szczerba every day.”

On September 16, 2011, after responding to a report of a theft from a motor vehicle and disorderly person in New Castle, Lt. Szczerba observed and approached David Salasky, a subject who matched the suspect description.  A foot pursuit ensued and resulted in a struggle, during which Sgt. Szczerba suffered fatal stab wounds.  Salasky continued to actively resist by fighting other officers, two of whom sustained injuries.

Salasky was indicted by the New Castle County Grand Jury on multiple counts of murder, burglary, weapons, and assault charges in December 2011.  Jury selection for the trial against Salasky had begun today in New Castle County Superior Court before Salasky pled guilty before Superior Court Judge William C. Carpenter, Jr. this afternoon.  Specifically, Salasky pled Guilty but Mentally Ill to 15 felony charges, including 2 counts of Murder 1st Degree for the death of Sgt. Szczerba, along with 4 counts of Possession of Deadly Weapon During Commission of Felony, 2 counts of Possession of a Deadly Weapon by Person Prohibited, 1 count of Resisting Arrest, 1 count of Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, 1 count of Assault 2nd Degree, and 4 counts of Burglary 3rd Degree.  As a condition of the guilty plea prosecutors agreed to not seek the death penalty at sentencing.  Delaware law requires that the Judge now make an independent determination that Salasky was mentally ill at the time of the crime before he imposes sentence.  A pre-sentence investigation was ordered by the Court and a sentencing date has not been set at this time.  Salasky faces a mandatory sentence of 2 life prison terms without the possibility of parole, plus up to 153 additional years in prison.

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David Salasky pleads guilty to the murder of New Castle County Police Lieutenant Joseph Szczerba

Criminal Division | Department of Justice | Department of Justice Press Releases | Date Posted: Monday, September 30, 2013



Wilmington – Attorney General Beau Biden announced that David Salasky pled guilty today to the September 2011 death of New Castle County Police officer Joseph Szczerba.

“This guilty plea in New Castle County Superior Court brings us closer to concluding a tragic and painful chapter for Delaware law enforcement and for our entire community,” Biden said.  “David Salasky’s plea of guilty but mentally ill recognizes that he is criminally responsible for the murder of Lieutenant Joseph Szczerba, and that Salasky is chronically and seriously mentally ill.  This resolution – the finality of a conviction and the certainty of a life sentence – is in the best interest of justice and it allows the Szczerba family, the New Castle County Police, and us all to move forward with healing and continuing to honor the memory of Joseph Szczerba every day.”

On September 16, 2011, after responding to a report of a theft from a motor vehicle and disorderly person in New Castle, Lt. Szczerba observed and approached David Salasky, a subject who matched the suspect description.  A foot pursuit ensued and resulted in a struggle, during which Sgt. Szczerba suffered fatal stab wounds.  Salasky continued to actively resist by fighting other officers, two of whom sustained injuries.

Salasky was indicted by the New Castle County Grand Jury on multiple counts of murder, burglary, weapons, and assault charges in December 2011.  Jury selection for the trial against Salasky had begun today in New Castle County Superior Court before Salasky pled guilty before Superior Court Judge William C. Carpenter, Jr. this afternoon.  Specifically, Salasky pled Guilty but Mentally Ill to 15 felony charges, including 2 counts of Murder 1st Degree for the death of Sgt. Szczerba, along with 4 counts of Possession of Deadly Weapon During Commission of Felony, 2 counts of Possession of a Deadly Weapon by Person Prohibited, 1 count of Resisting Arrest, 1 count of Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, 1 count of Assault 2nd Degree, and 4 counts of Burglary 3rd Degree.  As a condition of the guilty plea prosecutors agreed to not seek the death penalty at sentencing.  Delaware law requires that the Judge now make an independent determination that Salasky was mentally ill at the time of the crime before he imposes sentence.  A pre-sentence investigation was ordered by the Court and a sentencing date has not been set at this time.  Salasky faces a mandatory sentence of 2 life prison terms without the possibility of parole, plus up to 153 additional years in prison.

# # #

image_printPrint

Related Topics:  , ,


Graphic that represents delaware news on a mobile phone

Keep up to date by receiving a daily digest email, around noon, of current news release posts from state agencies on news.delaware.gov.

Here you can subscribe to future news updates.