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Police: Rio Rancho man stabbed mother

John Buric

John Buric

A woman died after being stabbed Sunday, and her son, who is reported to be mentally ill, is charged with her murder.

According to a news release from Rio Rancho Police Department, about 2:15 p.m. Sunday, a man called 911 and said his mother had a heart attack and was unresponsive in the 100 block of Second Street NE, which is near Rainbow and Sandia boulevards on the west side of Rio Rancho.

Emergency medical personnel found Kathleen Lopez-Buric, 51, of Rio Rancho, dead inside her home with a large stab wound to the left side of her chest, according to a criminal complaint filed in Sandoval County Magistrate Court.


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According to the news release, officers arrested Lopez-Buric’s son, 25-year-old John Buric, whose address is the same as his mother’s, immediately upon arriving.

According to the criminal complaint, Buric met an officer in the driveway and excitedly told him, “Me and her got into a fight.” Buric then put his hands behind his head and knelt without being told to do so.

Police found no one except Lopez-Buric and Buric at the residence and no signs of forced entry.

Lopez-Buric was lying inside the front door with a large, bloody kitchen knife in her left hand, according to the criminal complaint. She had a bruise on her right leg and red marks on her neck.

A detective believed the knife in Lopez-Buric’s hand was staged. Her fingers weren’t around the handle, and there was no blood on her hand, according to the complaint.

Buric agreed to speak with a detective but not about his family or what happened. He talked about his hobbies of body building and baseball, and appeared to be in good spirits, laughing during the conversation, according to the complaint.

Buric did tell the detective no one but he and his mother had been at their home. He had abrasions and scratches on his arms, hands, neck and chest.

A detective learned that Lopez-Buric had called dispatch about 11:20 p.m. Saturday and asked for officers to try to locate him because he had left the home and was mentally ill, according to the complaint.


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About 9:05 a.m. Sunday, a resident reported Buric as a suspicious person in the 800 block of Navajo Lane, southeast of Second Street. According to the complaint, the caller said Buric was selling weight-loss items, but didn’t have any brochures and seemed nervous.

Officers spoke with Buric, but he hadn’t broken any laws and walked away.

Then, about 10:25 a.m. the same day, Lopez-Buric called dispatchers to report her son missing. According to the complaint, she said Buric has “mental issues with differing personalities” and wasn’t taking his medication.

When an officer arrived at the home to take the report, Buric had returned, according to the complaint.

Buric was booked into Sandoval County Detention Center on an open count of murder with a $500,000 cash or surety bond.

Detectives were still investigating Monday. It is the fourth homicide investigated by Rio Rancho police in the past seven months.