The Michigan Daily

Tuesday, March 9, 1999

Details of murder continue to emerge

By Jaimie Winkler
Daily Staff Reporter

Days after the sudden and tragic deaths of a University student and alum, those who knew the victims are still trying to make sense of the puzzling tragedy - and cope with the consequences.

A friend discovered the bodies of LSA senior Natasha Qureshi and her boyfriend Christopher Groesbeck, a recent University graduate, Friday afternoon at Groesbeck's apartment on East Kingsley Street. Both died early Friday morning as a result of gunshot wounds.

LSA junior Melissa Jones, who lives in the Kingsley complex, went on a Spring Break trip to Toronto with Qureshi, Jones' boyfriend and a mutual friend.

Jones remembered meeting Qureshi at a birthday party for the friend. "She was with her boyfriend Chris," Jones said, adding that did not see Qureshi or Groesbeck much after the initial meeting.

When Qureshi was invited to Toronto, "she had just broken up with her boyfriend," Jones said. "I didn't mind - she seemed very friendly. Everyone had a great time. I didn't sense any sadness or anger in her."

During the weekend trip to Toronto, Jones said, Qureshi never talked about anything personal, including her relationship with her parents or boyfriend.

An autopsy performed by the Washtenaw County Medical Examiner revealed that Qureshi "sliced her wrists, shot him (Groesbeck) three times then shot herself in the head," said Ann Arbor Police Department Sgt. Michael Logghe, adding that the bullet that killed Groesbeck went through his lung and two other shots penetrated his neck and chest.

Qureshi and Groesbeck had been dating off and on for nearly a year-and-a-half, Logghe said, but police were never involved in previous disputes.

The two lived in the same apartment building. Similar Valentine's Day stickers still hung in both of their apartment windows on Sunday.

University student Saleem Khatri, a Qureshi family friend, said the immediate family was unaware of her relationship with Groesbeck and in disbelief about the events of the weekend, offering other theories of the event surrounding their daughter's death.

"She had excellent grades and was going to enter law school somewhere in New York in the fall," Khatri said.

AAPD interviews with Qureshi's family indicted Qureshi kept the relationship a secret.

"Her family did not know they were dating," Logghe said, adding that the investigation proves Qureshi's responsibility for the deaths and leaves little room for other theories.

Qureshi's family declined to comment.

Representatives from Counseling and Psychological Services and the Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center went to Qureshi's classes today to explain her absence and offer their services.

Two counselors went into Qureshi's political science class yesterday taught by Prof. Melvin Laracey.

"They talked from their respective perspectives about how students might react to a situation like this," Laracey said, adding that while the counselors invited students to share opinions or ask questions, his students were silent.

Laracey remembered Qureshi as an attentive student who was continuously interested in the course material.

She was "someone who made intelligent comments in class," Laracey said, "a student who participated regularly in class discussion."

Funeral arrangements have not been announced for Qureshi. Services for Groesbeck are scheduled for 3 p.m. Thursday, March 11 at Wessels and Wilk Funeral Home in Pleasant Ridge. Visitation is scheduled for Wednesday from 12-9 p.m. Memorial donations can be made to the Humane Society.

The Woman's Studies Program is planning a memorial time for friends and family of Qureshi tonight from 6-8 p.m. in 232D West Hall.


©1999 The Michigan Daily