Montrose coroner provides graphic testimony at Nemnich trial

The doctor who performed the autopsies on 1975 murder victims Linda Benson and her 5-year-old daughter Kelly is testifying today in the trial of accused killer Jerry Nemnich.

Dr. Thomas Canfield, the Montrose County Coroner, told jurors that Linda Benson suffered two stab wounds to the chest, two wounds to her back, in addition to a “slashing cross-pattern” on the chest. Canfield also testified that Benson was slashed across the throat three times.

Regarding the wounds to the throat, Canfield said, “The knife was twisted while the cuts were made on her neck.”

The other victim, Benson’s 5-year-old daughter Kelly, was stabbed eight to nine times in the chest, Canfield said.

Canfield surmised that both victims bled out from their wounds, causing their deaths.

Nemnich was arrested in April 2009, four months after his DNA matched up with blood samples from the Benson apartment, according to prosecutors. Nemnich’s DNA had been entered into a state offender database in 1989 while serving a 14-year sentence for rape.



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