A tragic case is unfolding in the South Bay after a software engineer walked in to a police station on Wednesday and confessed to killing his wife. His 11-year-old daughter was found dead as well.
Leonid Solomonovich Yamburg, 51, reportedly walked up to a clerk's desk at the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety at around 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, and announced that he had killed his wife. Shortly thereafter he refused to answer questions and asked for a lawyer.
"We had the suspect come up to our phone here and tell one of our records clerks they had killed their wife earlier in the day," as Capt. Craig Anderson of the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety tells KTVU.
Officers then went to Yamburg's house on West Homestead Drive, near Homestead High School in Sunnyvale, and discovered the body of 47-year-old Svetlana Nikitina. They then found the couple's 11-year-old daughter dead in a bathroom. Both wife and daughter had "sustain[ed] some significant head trauma," according to Anderson, and both were likely killed Wednesday morning.
As KTVU reports, the couple had lived in the neighborhood for about a decade, and Yamburg is employed as an engineer at Zultys, a voice-over-IP communications systems manufacturer based in Sunnyvale. They had apparently emigrated from Russia more than ten years ago.
Yamburg is now being held at the Santa Clara County Main Jail, as the Mercury News reports.
Nikitina spent the last decade working as a resource specialist and therapist for the Franklin-McKinley and Cupertino Union school districts. Leslie Mains, associate superintendent with Cupertino Union School District, tells the Mercury News, "We are so saddened by the tragedy and are working to support our students, staff and community during this very difficult time of tremendous loss. She was very beloved."
In a news conference, per the Chronicle, Anderson called the murders a "horrific tragedy" and he said that city officials’ "hearts are broken for the family, the victims and all their friends."
Sunnyvale is not a place associated with much violent crime, and the case has shocked the community. As the Mercury News notes, there have only been 19 homicides in Sunnyvale since 2010 including these two, and including two that occurred last year.