Police Arrest Suspects In Shrine Bowl Player Stabbing

By: Melissa Brunner / Sarah Plake/ Ariana Cohen
By: Melissa Brunner / Sarah Plake/ Ariana Cohen
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Police Release:
Shortly after 7:00 p.m. Tuesday night, officers made two arrests in connection with the July 27th robbery and stabbing of Brett Sterbach, age 18 of Shawnee at Hudson Crossing.

Daniel Wahquahboshkuk (Wa-ku-bush-cook) age 26 of Topeka, and Martin Rodriguez, age 23 of Topeka, were booked in on aggravated robbery, aggravated battery and aggravated assault.

Topeka police received information which led to these two individuals, and subsequently, their arrests.

Charges have been forwarded to the District Attorney’s office for consideration.

No additional details will be released at this time as we await the court process and the investigation continues.

Earlier Report:
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The victim of a Saturday night stabbing says he fought off his attackers after fighting opponents on the football field.

"In the heat of the moment I just reacted and fought back."

Metro Sports reports 18-year-old Brett Sterbach was the person injured. Sterbach, a recent graduate of Shawnee Mission West, had just finished playing in the Shrine Bowl when it happened.

Sterbach told Metro Sports he was heading home with his family when they stopped around 11 pm Saturday at the Phillips 66 gas station near SE 15th and Adams. Brett stayed in the car while his parents went inside. He told Metro Sports two Hispanic men in their 20s knocked on the window.

The first male subject asked Sterbach if he had a lighter. Once Sterbach opened his car door the subjects demanded Sterbach’s wallet. When the subjects did not get the wallet one of them stabbed Sterbach with a knife.

"I opened up the door and right as soon as I do that he pulls it open and pulls out a knife and is like, 'give me all your money, give me everything you have.' Right as I acted like I was putting my phone away I went to grab down the knife and then that's when I guess he stabbed me in the leg," Sterbach said.

Sterbach said he pulled the knife out of his leg and began fighting back, as he was being punched in the head by the second suspect.

No one saw the attack, except for the gas station's surveillance.

"I didn't really feel the knife wound. I was really lucky I just got away with just a little leg wound. They could've killed me. There's so many possibilities of what could have happened."

After the being stabbed, the two attackers ran away.

Sterbach's parents are thankful he's okay, and say what is now obvious, that the attackers picked the wrong person to rob.

"Those two young men were probably like what the heck!" Sterbach's mother said. "I'm very proud of him. We've always taught him to stick up for himself, to defend himself and we'll stick up for him."

The subject in the green shirt will have significant wounds to his left shoulder area and the subject in the darker hoodie may have wounds to his torso and left shoulder.

Both suspects in the robbery were seen leaving in a Blue Dodge Ram four-door pick-up that was driven by another subject believed to be a Hispanic male wearing a red shirt.

If anyone recognizes these two individuals or has information leading to their arrest you may call Crime Stoppers at 234-0007 and be eligible for a reward. You may also call Detectives at 368-9400.

Sterbach's leg needed 14 stitches and will take about three weeks to heal.


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