A 57-year-old Indian-American doctor has been stabbed to death allegedly by an Indian-origin patient near his clinic in the Wichita city of Kansas.
Psychiatrist Achutha Reddy, who hailed from Telangana, was found dead with multiple knife wounds in an alley behind his clinic in East Wichita on Wednesday, police said.
One of his patients, 21-year-old Umar Rashid Dutt, also an Indian-American, has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder.
Reddy was pronounced dead on the spot by the police, Lt Todd Ojile, section commander of the homicide division at the Wichita Police Department, told reporters at a news conference yesterday.
The incident happened on Wednesday evening. The police received the call around 7.20 pm.
The accused man was found at a country club after a security guard reported a suspicious person sitting in a car in the parking lot with blood on his clothes.
“During the investigation, we learned that the 21-year- old suspect was a client of Dr Reddy and had been at the office. The suspect was in the business for a short time. He left and then later came back with Dr Reddy and they went into an office there, Ojile said.
“After going to an office, a disturbance was heard. An office manager entered into the office and observed the suspect assaulting Dr ready. She attempted to stop the assault which allowed the doctor to flee the office, he said.
Umar chased the doctor out of his office, and stabbed him multiple times, Ojile said, adding that the reason for the murder has not been ascertained yet.
Umar has been held on USD one million bond. According to Wichita State University, he was a former student and was last enrolled in the spring of 2015.
“His tragic loss will be felt by many. In today’s world mental health resources are stretched thin. Many looked toward Dr Reddy for help in their times of crisis. As many providers in the mental health profession, he offered hope to many suffering from mental illness, Wichita Police Department said in a statement.
Reddy graduated from a medical school at Osmania University in India in 1986 and did his residency at the University of Kansas Medical Center in 1998.
He specialised in psychiatry. Holistic Psychiatric Services psychotherapist Brenda Trammel described it as a great loss.
“Dr Reddy was an amazing, compassionate man that was kind and loving to anyone he met. He had a gift of knowing what each and every one of us needed and gave it freely,” she said.
“He would often tell me you have to have freedom to live life to the fullest and this is how he lived his life. He thought of himself as our father and his job was to guide us to do well in our lives. He expected the best from all of us and we gave it to him with the same abandon he gave to us,” Trammel said.
The Indian American community in Wichita has expressed shock over the incident.
“With a heavy heart, we regret to inform our community, that a member of our Wichita Indian Community has lost his life last night. We will provide more information as it becomes available,” Cultural Association of India-Wichita said.