[anvplayer video=”1041600″ /]PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Andres Arguijo Acosta spent last Friday fishing with friends and streaming videos on his new smartphone, according to a close friend. By daybreak Saturday morning, he was dead.
Providence Police say a Cranston man committed the crime, after entering his ex-girlfriend’s home and stabbing her boyfriend, Arguijo Acosta, because he was jealous. The girlfriend witnessed the crime, the police said.
Fredi Lopez, 32, was formally charged Monday morning with first-degree murder. Providence Police say he showed up at his ex-girlfriend’s Alverson Avenue apartment in Providence before 5 a.m. Saturday.
“He gained access to the house; it may have been from an unlocked door, he may have jimmied the lock to get in,” Providence Police Maj. David Lapatin said. While fighting with Arguijo Acosta–the woman’s current boyfriend–Lopez is accused of grabbing a large steak knife and stabbing him in the chest. Arguijo Acosta was later pronounced dead at Rhode Island Hospital.
After talking with eyewitnesses, police found Lopez at his home on Argyle Street in Cranston Saturday afternoon. A police report obtained by Eyewitness News says he had taken his cell phone apart and was cutting his own hair, remnants of which were photographed on his kitchen floor by police. The report says Lopez changed his clothes, discarded his shirt in a barbecue grill outside his home and put his shorts in a plastic bag in the kitchen. Police also towed his car.
Andres Arguijo Acosta was a father of three who worked in the jewelry business, his close friend Hugo Tamup said in an interview with Eyewitness News.
Tamup said he and Arguijo Acosta went fishing together with another friend the day before he was killed.
“He was a nice person,” Tamup said. “I didn’t believe it. I said ‘no, he was with me yesterday.'” Tamup was overcome with emotion, referring to Arguijo Acosta as his “best friend.”
Sayda Moran, who lives next door to the crime scene, said the woman had recently moved to the neighborhood. She had never seen either of the two men.
“I had heard some fighting next door, but we never knew who it was since we never knew who they were,” Moran said.
The victim’s girlfriend was not hurt in the attack, police said, though she was in the room when it happened. There was no previous restraining order between her and Lopez, police said, but a judge ordered Lopez to stay away from her from now on.
The judge also ordered Lopez be held without bail Monday pending a bail hearing on August 17.
In an interview outside court, Lopez’s attorney Joseph Voccola said Lopez and the girlfriend were “off-and-on.” Lopez’s two sisters and a brother attended his murder arraignment.
“Completely out of character,” Voccola said the family told him. “The man’s been here, was gainfully employed for over two decades” in the landscaping business, he said.
Voccola said Lopez is denying the charges, but said he did not yet have all the information to fully comment.
“We don’t even have any information to substantiate these allegations,” he said. “Whenever a life is lost, it’s a tragic situation.”
Annie Shalvey and Bill Tomison contributed to this report.
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