San Diego

Judge to Decide if Donut Shop Owner's Accused Killer Will Stand Trial

Both the prosecution’s attorney Kristie Nikoletich and defense attorney George Rosenstock, questioned multiple witnesses including detectives, officers first at the scene and the Taing family, about what happened April 5, 2019

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The man accused of killing the owner of a popular Linda Vista donut shop will return to court on Friday to see if his case will go to trial.

During a court appointment on Thursday, prosecutors say Keon Willis broke into 58-year-old donut shop owner Randy Taing's Clairemont home on April 5, 2019. Tiang was found covered in blood with trauma to his upper body and died in a hospital three days later.

Randy Tiang's son Anthony, who lived with his parents, testified as the suspect looked on. Anthony Tiang explained his father had been working a different shift as a fill-in baker on the day of the alleged attack, meaning he was at home at a time he typically isn't.

Anthony Tiang told prosecutors he received a call from both his parents that day. One call was from his father, who was breathing heavily and could barely speak loud enough to hear. Anthony Tiang said he was the first at the home and recounted the moments he first saw his dad.

“So when I arrived home I saw my mom and my dad in the doorway. My dad was laying down. Blood was all over his face and he was very pale. My mom was crying on top of him. As I came home I checked his pulse and then felt nothing. And then immediately looked around the house just to see what had been taken,” he said.

Paramedics arrived, attempted CPR and transferred Randy Taing to a hospital where he died three days later. His official cause of death is unclear, but police officers said at the time, he had trauma to his upper body.

Photos revealed by prosecutors showed bloodstains on the bed in the main bedroom, as well as on the floor.

Anthony Tiang then described belongings missing from his bedroom, including a safe containing part of a firearm, and several firearms in a bag he had not unpacked after a visit to a shooting range.

Several rooms in the home were also ransacked, according to prosecutors.

Officers eventually found the safe along Interstate 15 near a bike path. The prosecutor projected dozens of pictures of evidence including officers’ graphic body-worn camera footage, Randy Tiang’s autopsy and hospital photos, the damaged gatehouse and the suspect’s alleged vehicle.

The defense attorney asked about the original theory of a potential second suspect. It was unclear if that will be part of the proceedings moving forward.

According to Tanya Sierra with the District Attorney’s office, if convicted of first-degree murder and felony burglary charges, Willis could face life in prison. He could also be implicated in two other San Diego-area burglaries. He has pleaded not guilty.

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