BERN TOWNSHIP, Pa. (CBS) — A community in Berks County is remembering the life of Dennis Fink, an Air Force veteran who was murdered outside of his home. Officials are not yet sure if the veteran was targeted or if the fatal attack was random.
The Berks County District Attorney charged 29-year-old Raphael Perez-Rodriguez with first-degree murder.
He’s accused of fatally stabbing the 76-year-old Fink in Fink’s Bern Township backyard earlier this month.
Police say after the murder, Perez-Rodgriguez ransacked Fink’s home and stole his wallet, laptop and other items.
But shortly after, he was pulled over during a traffic stop in Reading because the car had an altered license. Police later discovered the car was stolen.
“Reading police officers discovered items belonging to Fink in a stolen car Perez-Rodriguez was driving. This is an unusual crime to occur in our community. A military veteran lost his life and I think that our community needs to focus on this victim and the loss of life that has occurred,” Berks County District Attorney John Adams said.
Fink served more than 20 years as a pilot in the Air Force.
“He was very intelligent. I mean, gosh, I didn’t realize he had two Master’s degrees. He certainly wasn’t boastful or anything,” neighbor Barbara Steslow said.