BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. -- In a tragic turn of events, former Credit Union Times Special Assignments Reporter Carol Anne Burger and her ex-partner Jessica Kalish are at the center of a murder-suicide.
Boynton Beach Police said that the homicide investigation of Jessica Kalish has determined that "there is more than enough probable cause" to establish that Burger killed Kalish on Oct. 22.
Kalish, 56, was stabbed more than 200 times with a Phillips screwdriver in the garage of the Churchill Drive home she shared with Burger.
Burger, 57, who died from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot wound, was found in the backyard of their home just hours after learning of the murder of her ex-partner.
Detectives executed a search warrant at the home on Oct. 28 and found blood in the garage and a bathroom. When crime scene technicians and detectives returned to the home, a luminol test indicated "a tremendous amount of blood" had been cleaned up from the garage, washing machine, a shower, a bathroom floor and a bathroom sink.
The luminol also revealed Burger's sneaker prints in the garage, indicative of her walking through the blood.
After she was killed, Kalish was put in the back seat of her BMW, which was left in the parking lot at 2300 S. Congress Ave. in Boynton Beach, Fla.
Around 1 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 23, Burger called Boynton Beach Police and reported Kalish missing. It was only a few minutes after someone called her house to report finding Kalish's wallet and car keys. That person told police that when they found the wallet, they looked at the driver license and found Kalish in the phone book.
Burger told police that Kalish had not returned home from working out Wednesday night and that she did not show up for work or a doctor's appointment on Thursday.
On Friday, Oct. 24, detectives went to Kalish's home to speak with Burger and found her dead in the backyard from a gunshot wound.
The police now consider the case solved but not closed, pending forensic review of all evidence.
"This has all been very shocking for our staff," CU Times Editor-in-Chief Sarah Snell Cooke said. "This is the most difficult story we've ever had to write. We still can't believe she was capable of this."
Burger, who served on the editorial staff from 1993-99, returned to CU Times as Special Assignments Reporter from May 2007 to June 2008. An award-winning photojournalist who specialized in the financial industry for nearly a decade, she earned accolades for reporting on the events surrounding the Oklahoma City bombing and the recovery of Federal Employees Credit Union; the campaign to pass the Credit Union Membership Access Act; and coverage of consumer financial privacy issues. For those in-depth series of stories, she won recognition from the Florida Magazine Association and the American Association of Business Press Editors.
A veteran in the credit union movement, Burger also previously performed public relations work for NASCUS and the National Association of CUSOs.
At the time of her death Burger was writing for the Huffington Post Web site, contributing to the 'Off the Bus' presidential election campaign coverage.