Thursday January 10, 2013

BEDFORD, N.H. -- Though Sonia Quesada was found dead and her husband unconscious only two months after the couple were beaten in their home, Bedford police were being cautious Tuesday not to link the two events.

Police found Quesada dead and Dr. Eduardo Quesada unconscious Monday after a family member called asking police to check in on the couple. The couple had been staying at a Bedford condominium, owned by Eduardo Quesada’s mother following the Nov. 24 attack that left him severely beaten.

The family member told police that several attempts to contact the couple were unsuccessful and that both hadn’t shown up at appointments scheduled Monday morning. After trying unsuccessfully to reach them, police got permission from family to force their way into the condo.

Eduardo Quesada, 52, an anesthesiologist with Amoskeag Anesthesia in Manchester, was hospitalized. His condition Tuesday wasn’t immediately known. Quesada is affiliated with Elliot Hospital.

"There was no visible sign of trauma to either of the individuals," Police Chief John Bryfonski said. "There was a large amount -- or what would be considered to be a large amount -- of prescription medication that was found nearby."

Bryfonski said police found no sign of forced entry at the condo in the upscale 55-plus community known as The Mews. No one else was found inside the home; the couple’s 2-year-old daughter apparently was staying with relatives.


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Bryfonski said police had some limited conversation with Quesada on Monday before he was hospitalized. "We’re not prepared to talk about anything that he may have said," the chief said.

Investigators remained silent -- offering no briefings or new details. Police said they were treating the November attack and Monday’s discovery as "separate investigations." Senior Assistant Attorney General Jane Young, who heads the criminal division, did not return calls seeking comment.

On Nov. 24, police responded to the couple’s $1.1 million home after Sonia Quesada reportedly fled to a neighbor’s house and called 911. She said she and her husband had just entered their home when they were assaulted by a man wearing a ski mask and dark clothing. Police said the Quesadas suffered serious injuries. Authorities are still searching for the attacker.

On Tuesday, The Mews condominium complex was besieged by media, who gathered near a state police crime van in the Quesada’s driveway, until nearby homeowners asked police to ask journalists to leave.

Up until then, reporters could see crime scene technicians occasionally carry bagged items to the van. One investigator took a series of outside shots of the stand-alone home and several detectives came and went without comment.

Some residents of the sprawling complex of light pastel-colored homes said the investigation was unsettling but they felt none of the alarm or fear that followed the violent home invasion in their town involving the same couple.

"For an over-55 community that’s usually quiet, this is, like, really bizarre," said resident Janice Bullock, who lives up the street but doesn’t know the Quesadas. "You see rescue trucks once in a while, but not this. I wish this would go away."

Paul Morf, who lives on a nearby street in The Mews, said the 55-and-over community is a "marvelous" place to live.

"Usually tragedy comes in the form of natural deaths or natural accidents," Morf said. "I don’t feel alarmed. I feel very, very sorry for the family involved."

After the November attack, the town held a public meeting to try to address questions and concerns. Bryfonski told those gathered Dec. 6 that the FBI and Drug Enforcement Administration joined police in their investigation.