‘Kindest, most thoughtful person’: Neighbors shaken by Hillcrest man’s death

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SAN DIEGO — Hillcrest residents were shaken Thursday to learn a neighbor had been found dead at his home the night before, sharing their condolences and voicing concerns about security in their neighborhood.

Police have not yet publicly identified the 60-year-old victim found at his home on 8th Avenue near state Route 163 around 7 p.m. Wednesday. A man called officers to say he’d found his friend dead inside the home. Authorities deemed the death suspicious and homicide detectives are now leading the investigation. Beyond saying the man had “trauma to his body,” authorities provided sparse details.

Neighbors on the block Thursday said they had met the man, but FOX 5 is not publicly identifying him until police assure that his family has been notified. Residents said he lived alone and was a kind person.

“I think he was raising a puppy to become a seeing-eye dog,” said one neighbor, who asked not to share their name. “Just the kindest, most thoughtful person.”

“If it’s what everybody is thinking … It’s horrible,” another told FOX 5.

Leslie Hotchkiss lives a few doors down and says she was home around the time her neighbor was found dead, but she didn’t see or hear anything suspicious. “It sounds like something personal,” she said. “It sounds like something nobody knows the story of. I mean, you just have to watch your back.”

Another neighbor who declined to be named said he’s worried about crime in the area. “There’s been a lot more problems lately in the neighborhood with the homeless, drugs and all that stuff,” he said. “Would be peace of mind to know a little more about what’s going on.”

Anyone with information about the man’s death was asked to call the San Diego Police Department Homicide Unit at 619-531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.

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