Eviction, Noise Complaints But No Motive Revealed

Richard Saldivar KNSD

Jennifer Lee Jones' next-door neighbor waited for her to get home to her Rancho Bernardo apartment, then followed her through the front door and killed her quickly, prosecutors said at a Tuesday court appearance. At the time, Jones was on her cell phone with her mother, who told police she heard a man's voice, sounds of a struggle and a scream.

Details of the attack were revealed during a Tuesday court appearance by suspect Richard Saldivar.

The attack happened around 4:45 p.m. Oct. 22 at the Overlook Apartments on Avenida Venusto. After Jones' mother contacted police, they found Jones, 28, inside her first-floor apartment  dead from multiple stab wounds.

Saldivar, 40, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment but prosecutors say Saldivar, who lived right across from Jones, saw her coming home and ran inside to get his knife.

He lived with his wife and children and had been given an eviction notice the day of the attack. Some neighbors who didn't want to be identified said Saldivar was a very noisy neighbor, who often played loud music with his front door wide open.

Prosecutors wouldn't reveal a motive at the arraignment but said the victim's mother gave information to police that eventually led to Saldivar.

"They contacted him later that evening, he had fresh cuts and scratches on his arms consistent with the attack," said prosecutor Kristen Spieler.

Detectives found Saldivar around 10 p.m. the evening of the attack sitting in his car in the parking lot near the crime scene with his family. They arrested him just after 8 a.m. the next day.

Outside the courthouse, Saldivar's family didn't want to comment, but a family friend had this to say about Jennifer Lee Jones who was a devout Jehovah's witness.

"Just a delightful young lady that always has a smile on her face," said Ken Chernish.

According to prosecutors, the victim was an engineer who worked for a San Diego company called Solar Turbines. Saldivar is unemployed, they said.

Saldivar pleaded not guilty and his bail has been set at $2 million.

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