Housemate calls Lakeside murder suspect ‘dangerous, unstable, violent’

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A newspaper carrier found a body at 4:20 a.m. Sunday in the 10400 block of
Aquilla Drive.

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LAKESIDE, Calif. – The housemate of a man accused of stabbing a 35-year-old man to death in a residential neighborhood in East County said the suspect is dangerous, unstable and violent.

Trammel Joseph Rizzuti, an El Cajon resident was found by a newspaper carrier on a Lakeside sidewalk on Sunday.  Rizutti's body was found at 4:20 a.m. Sunday in the 10400 block of Aquilla Drive,  according to Lt. Kenneth Nelson of the San Diego County sheriff's Homicide Detail. An autopsy on the 35-year-old victim revealed he was killed by "sharp force trauma'' inflicted during a homicide, authorities said.

Lance Benson, 29, was arrested by San Diego County sheriff's homicide detectives Sunday and booked into the San Diego Central Jail on suspicion of one count of murder. He was being held without bail and was due to be arraigned on Wednesday, according to sheriff's online inmate records.

"It's definitely scary living with someone who is capable of doing something like that," said Benson's housemate, Derek Downey.

Downey said Benson moved into the house about two months ago. He said Benson has mental health problems and was not taking his medications.

"I know he's really dangerous when it comes to fighting and stuff like that," Downey said.

Downey said he had never seen Rizutti before the murder, but other neighborhood residents told FOX 5 they may have seen the victim riding in Benson's car on Saturday afternoon, but they had never seen him before that.

Detectives have not said what the motive for the murder might have been. They asked anyone with information about the killing to call the Homicide Detail at (858) 974-2321, or after hours at 858-565-5200. Anonymous tips can be provided through Crime Stoppers by calling 888-580-8477. Information leading to an arrest could yield a reward of up to $1,000.

 

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