M, b. August 18, 1977, d. April 1, 2009
- Birth: Anthony Edlbeck was born on August 18, 1977 in Marinette, Marinette Co, Wisconsin.
- Death: He died on April 1, 2009, at age 31, in Sun Prairie, Dane Co, Wisconsin.
- Note: Dane County coroner identifies Sun Prairie homicide victim
By SANDY CULLEN and NICK HEYNEN
Wisconsin State Journal
April 2, 2009
The father of the Sun Prairie man found stabbed to death Wednesday morning in the parking lot of his apartment building said the attack was "sudden and unprovoked."
The Dane County coroner’s office said Thursday that Anthony Edlbeck, 31, of Sun Prairie, died from multiple stab wounds, according to preliminary results of a forensic exam.
Police say Zachary C. Schams, 24, who lives in an apartment building next door to Edlbeck’s confessed to the killing. Edlbeck’s body was found about 7:30 a.m. in the parking lot behind his apartment building, 128 W. Klubertanz Drive.
Schams, who called for an ambulance for a hand injury Wednesday morning, has been tentatively charged with first-degree intentional homicide and is being held in the Dane County Jail.
Investigators are still looking into the circumstances surrounding Edlbeck’s death, including whether he knew Schams, said Sun Prairie police spokesman Rem Brandt.
"Our son Tony was a quiet, gentle, compassionate person," Dale Edlbeck, of Marinette, said in a prepared statement he read to the State Journal.
"It is our understanding, contrary to prior reports, that the attack was sudden and unprovoked. We have not been made aware of any previous incidents with the perpetrator," he said. "We are in shock over such a senseless, violent crime and ask for your prayers and understanding in our loss."
Army Capt. Alex Thyne, 31, who described Edlbeck as his best friend since they met at Catholic Central High School in Marinette 18 years ago, called the murder "a senseless death."
"Tony was a pacifist," he said.
Thyne said he helped Edlbeck move from Madison to Sun Prairie in October so he would be closer to his job at the Foot Locker distribution center, where he had worked for about five years.
He said Edlbeck, who usually left for his job between 6:30 and 7 a.m., might have been on his way to work when he was killed. Police were constructing a timeline and could not confirm that.
"We’re still looking for witnesses," Brandt said.
Police are asking anyone who saw anything suspicious that morning to call 608-837-7336 or their anonymous tip line at 608-837-6300.
Adria Kaufman, who has known Edlbeck since 1995, called him "a gentle giant" who was "quick to smile" and "would give a helping hand whenever asked without expecting anything in return."
"As long as Tony was around, I knew there was hope for us girls that good men do exist," Kaufman said. "He was a man of real integrity."
- Note: Anthony (Tony) D. Edlbeck
Anthony (Tony) D. Edlbeck, 31, of 128 W. Klubertanz Dr., Sun Prairie, was tragically taken from us on Wednesday, April 1, 2009, in Sun Prairie. Born in Marinette on August 18, 1977, he is the son of Dale and Bonnie (Kovach) Edlbeck of Peshtigo.
Tony was a 1995 graduate of Marinette Catholic Central and graduated from Herzing College in Madison in 2002. Tony was an Electronics Technician for Famous Footwear in Sun Prairie. Tony was a quiet, gentle, compassionate man. He loved animals, enjoyed electronics, music and spending time with his family and friends. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him.
Tony is survived by his parents, Dale and Bonnie of
Peshtigo: a sister, Tammy (Ken) Hardin of Richmond Mich.; a paternal grandmother, Betty Edlbeck of Wausaukee, Wis.; a niece, Courtney Hardin; his best friend, Alex Thyne, and many aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather Dick Edlbeck and maternal grandparents, John and Martha Kovach-Coakley.
Visitation will be held on Monday, April 6, 2009, at the St. Mary Catholic Parish in Peshtigo from 3 p.m. until the time of Mass at 6:30 p.m. Father Michael Clifford will be officiating.
Burial will take place at the Riverside Cemetery in Peshtigo.
A memorial fund for victims of violent crime has been established in Tony's memory.
Berth and Rosenthal is assisting the family.
- Note: Saturday, April 04, 2009
Bizarre attack claims life of Marinette native
Saturday, April 04, 2009
MADISON, Wis. - A 31-year-old Marinette native was murdered outside his Sun Prairie apartment building Wednesday morning.
Anthony D. Edlbeck, a 1995 graduate of Marinette Catholic Central High School, died when he was repeatedly stabbed by a man wielding a sword, according to a criminal complaint filed Friday in Dane County Circuit Court.
Zachary C. Schams, 24, who lived in the apartment building next to Edlbeck, was charged with first-degree intentional homicide with the use of a dangerous weapon.
Schams had concocted an elaborate plan that included buying a sword and wearing clothing he could easily clean or dispose of, according to court records.
Schams also had a notebook containing the handwritten last name of the victim along with the words "dead soon," and a Tarat card representing death in the pocket of a black trench coat with red stains that police found in Schams' apartment, records show.
Police also found three Samurai-type swords and other red-stained clothing, towels, carpet and a knife in Schams' apartment.
His public defender said Schams needed to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.
"I think there is reason to doubt (Schams') competency," Assistant Public Defender Dennis Burke told the court.
Assistant District Attorney Corey Stephan agreed that Schams should undergo evaluation.
A judge complied, ordering that Schams be given a psychiatric evaluation before his next court hearing, scheduled for April 17. Bail was set at $500,000.
Schams, who appeared in court wearing a suicide-prevention vest, told Sun Prairie police that he planned to kill Edlbeck with a sword as Edlbeck left for work Wednesday morning and described to police how he carried out the attack, according to the criminal complaint.
Police said there was no indication that Edlbeck knew Schams or had ever had contact with him. During his conversation with police, in which he admitted killing Edlbeck, Schams referred to Edlbeck incorrectly as "Steve," according to the criminal complaint.
Edlbeck's body was found about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday in the parking lot behind his apartment building.
According to the complaint, it was Schams who called an ambulance for himself after the attack Wednesday morning, because he had cut his hand with the sword while he attacked Edlbeck.
Schams told police that he started planning to kill Edlbeck on March 23, and bought the sword March 27. He continued planning the next day and carried out his plan on Wednesday, the complaint states.
That plan involved wearing clothing that could be easily cleaned or disposed of and setting up his mattress in front of his bedroom window so he could re-enter his apartment through a window after the attack, the complaint states.
He told police he intercepted Edlbeck as he was getting into his car, stabbed him in the arm, and then continued to stab him as Edlbeck tried to fight him off. After a final stab to his chest, as Edlbeck lay on the pavement, Schams told police he stopped the attack because he believed Edlbeck was fatally injured, then ran back to his apartment.
Schams told police he called his employer and told him he would not be coming to work because he had been involved in an accident. Then he called 911.
Edlbeck was pronounced dead at the scene at 9:44 a.m. Wednesday. The Dane County coroner said Thursday that Edlbeck died of a number of "penetrating sharp-force injuries."
Edlbeck, who was born in Marinette, is the son of Dale and Bonnie Edlbeck of Peshtigo. He graduated from Herzing College in Madison in 2002 and was working as an electronics technician in Sun Prairie.
Dale Edlbeck issued a statement after the attack saying his son's death had left the family in shock.
Mary Jo Edlebeck
Jean Marie Edlebeck