Police: Friend Murdered Georgetown Law Student
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ROCKVILLE, Md. — A man charged with killing a Georgetown University law student and high school friend told police officers that “I killed my buddy” and that he believed his girlfriend and the victim were having a romantic relationship behind his back, Montgomery County police said.
Rahul Gupta is charged with second-degree murder, accused of fatally stabbing Mark Edward Waugh after the two high school friends and others had gone out over the weekend for a night of drinking to celebrate Gupta’s 24th birthday, police said.
They returned to the Silver Spring apartment that Gupta and his girlfriend shared, and officers were called there around 3:25 a.m. Sunday for a report of “unknown trouble,” police said in a report outlining the basis for the charge against Gupta.
Officers who responded found Gupta covered in blood and an unresponsive Waugh with multiple stab and “defensive-type” wounds. Gupta’s girlfriend told police that she couldn’t remember anything after drinking shots of alcohol at the apartment but was woken up by Gupta’s orders to call 911, according to the police report. When an officer asked Gupta what had happened, he replied that he walked in on his girlfriend cheating on him, police say.
“My girl and my buddy were cheating, my girl was cheating with my buddy. I walked in on them cheating and I killed my buddy” Gupta told officers, according to the arrest report.
Gupta’s lawyer, Reginald Bours III, questioned the accuracy of the statements attributed to his client and said he was unaware of any evidence of cheating. He said the statement didn’t make sense because Gupta, his girlfriend and Waugh were all together inside the studio apartment.
“That did not happen. I have no idea how they got that or how they attribute him to saying that,” Bours said in an interview. “There’s got to be confusion on somebody’s part.”
Gupta’s bond was set at $2 million. A judge Tuesday rejected a defense request to reduce it.
Waugh, 23, was a first-year law student at Georgetown University, which was making counselors and chaplains available on campus.
“He was a bright young man, full of potential,” the law school said in a statement. “The Georgetown Law community is shocked and deeply saddened by this tragic loss.”
Gupta and Waugh were friends from Langley High School in McLean, Va., where Gupta was on the tennis team. Gupta is pursuing a master’s degree in biomedical engineering at George Washington University, his lawyer said.
“He’s an outstanding young man who has absolutely no history of violence or aggressiveness,” Bours said, adding, “There’s just nothing in his background that would suggest this could happen.”
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