MARION COUNTY, Florida (February 13, 2018) – Marion County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) Major Crimes detectives arrested Dunnellon resident David Romig (DOB: 10/07/1965) for reporting an alleged home invasion on Tuesday, January 30, 2018, in an effort to cover up the murder of his live-in girlfriend, Sally Kaufmann-Ruff (DOB 10/06/1953).
Romig told detectives at the time of the incident that an unknown armed subject entered his home located at 10499 SW 122nd Court in Dunnellon in the early morning hours on Tuesday, and that Kaufmann-Ruff had been shot during an altercation between Romig and the subject. During the investigation, evidence proved that David’s initial testimony was false and that he had staged the scene to support the presence of an intruder after he had shot Kaufmann-Ruff during an “out-of-body” experience.
When deputies arrived on scene that morning, Kaufmann-Ruff was immediately issued medical attention and was transported to the hospital, where she later passed away from her injuries. Romig gave detectives his initial story and MCSO forensic technicians began processing evidence. A metal smoking pipe was found in the front yard and a piece of cloth was found on the door frame. Romig initially said these items must have come from the suspect, but Romig’s DNA was found on both items.
Romig also sent several incriminating text messages to detectives and his wife the day of the incident. Romig texted detectives the morning of January 30th saying, “I think they are going to arrest me.” Romig told detectives that the text was meant for his wife and that he had accidentally sent it to them. Romig also texted his wife on January 30th saying, “I’m afraid I did something I don’t remember.” Romig further stated, “If I did this I will kill myself.”
In a Post- Miranda interview with MCSO Major Crimes detectives on Monday, February 12, 2018, Romig said he had been suffering from “black-outs” and that he was hearing voices. He described having an “out-of-body” experience the morning of the shooting, saying he felt like he was wrestling with himself and the gun went off, shooting Kaufmann-Ruff in the head. Romig said he staged the scene to make it look like a home invasion because he blacked out.
Romig previously told detectives that he was the sole beneficiary listed in Kaufmann-Ruff’s will, excluding her only child. Investigation revealed that Kaufmann-Ruff’s estate included in excess of $200,000 in liquid assets, in addition to her physical property (home, car, etc). Romig was arrested and charged with Second Degree Murder, Tampering with Evidence by Staging the Crime Scene and False Reporting of a Crime. He is currently being held in the Marion County Jail on no bond.