A Florida Keys man was arrested and charged with murder Saturday, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.
Police say Manuel Garcia-Avila, 79, stabbed a 68-year-old homeless man to death. Garcia-Avila was charged with murder and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, jail records show.
The victim was identified Tuesday as Jesus Gonzalez Noa. His address was listed as the “streets of Key West,” the sheriff’s office said.
Garcia-Avila on Tuesday remained at the Monroe County Detention Center on Stock Island under no bail.
Deputies responded to the 5000 block of Fifth Avenue on Stock Island — an address near an area known colloquially as “La Curva” — at 5:17 p.m. regarding an unknown problem.
[Deputies] found the victim sitting on a chair outside and bleeding heavily. A kitchen knife with blood on it was on a nearby table,” police said in a statement Sunday. “The victim was taken to Lower Keys Medical Center on Stock Island whereupon he was pronounced dead.”
According to a witness statement gathered by police, Garcia-Avila sleeps in the shack at the property.
“The witness saw the victim earlier in the day and invited him back to the property where they began drinking beer and talking. Garcia-Avila awoke and became angry that the victim was on the property. The witness stated Garcia-Avila grabbed a knife and stabbed the victim in the chest. The witness intervened and stopped Garcia-Avila from stabbing the victim again,” police said.
Garcia-Avila was interviewed. When asked his address, Garcia-Avila stated, where he had “stabbed that guy earlier,” according to police. Garcia-Avila told officials that it wasn’t the first time he had stabbed the victim and that he had served eight months in county jail for that previous stabbing before the victim dropped the charges.
“Garcia-Avila told the victim to leave when the victim allegedly threatened him,” police said in a statement. “Garcia-Avila stated he then retrieved the knife and stabbed the victim. Garcia-Avila stated he was aiming for the victim’s heart. Garcia-Avila stated he intended to kill the victim. Garcia-Avila stated the victim never put his hands on him as he never gave the victim a chance to do so. Garcia-Avila stated he would have continued to stab the victim had the witness not intervened.”