'It's pretty sad:' Greenfield PD identifies victim of 'random' fatal stabbing, suspect in custody

GREENFIELD -- An innocent man was killed on the job in what police are calling a 'random' stabbing. The attack unfolded near 60th and Armour in Greenfield on Tuesday, Aug. 27.

Police say around noon Tuesday, 49-year-old Ben Christianson was stabbed with an edged weapon in a "completely random assault."

The brutal murder -- which occurred in broad daylight -- has shaken the otherwise quiet community.

"It's just kind of crazy what society is turning into. It's pretty sad, it really is," said Chuck Schultz, a Greenfield resident.

Christianson's mother Jane tells FOX6 News her son was a hydrogeologist with Ramaker & Associates (statement below). During the attack, he was collecting soil samples.

Medical examiner responds to suspicious death at 61st and Cold Spring Road in Greenfield

Christianson was taken to the hospital but died from his injuries. Christianson's mother says her son would have turned 50 years old on Labor Day.

Jane Christianson also issued the following statement to FOX6 News:

"It is ironic that Ben's life was ended where he loved being -- outdoors -- doing what he loved, his job. Ben lived his almost 50 years fully; skiing, fishing, working and camping with his buddies."

Greenfield police say the attacker ran from the scene on-foot. A person of interest was detained near 61st and Cold Spring for questioning Tuesday afternoon -- and was later determined to be the lone suspect. He is a 19-year-old Greenfield man. Police say there appears to be no connection between the victim and suspect, and the motive remains unknown at this time.

Suspect in fatal stabbing arrested at 61st and Cold Spring Road in Greenfield

Investigators are asking anyone who may have witnessed this incident to contact the Greenfield Police Department. If you live in the area and have a home surveillance system, you are urged to check your video for anything that may be of evidentiary value.

Statement from Ramaker & Associates, Inc.

“Yesterday we learned that we lost a member of our team in a senseless act of violence in Greenfield. We are heartbroken to learn of this incident. He was a wonderful person and a great member of our organization.

"As an organization we are devastated and our thoughts go out to his family and loved ones. We are providing access to grief counselors for our employees to help them get through this difficult time.

"We thank and appreciate the first responders for their efforts in this situation. We are proactively working with law enforcement as they proceed with their investigation and are providing them with any information they need to solve this case, we strongly encourage others to do the same.

"Due to the nature of this investigation and out of respect to the loved ones of the team member we lost, we will have no further comment at this time.”

-- Michael Pinske, Chief Operating Officer