San Diego

SDPD Intensifies Search for Violent Suspect Sought in Random Attacks

Suspect may have changed his appearance and is likely using public transportation to get around the city, homicide investigators said

Armed with images from a store surveillance camera, San Diego Police have been canvassing areas known to attract the homeless as they hunt for a man believed to be responsible for four brutal attacks in four days.

Two men were killed and two others were hospitalized in critical condition, described as suffering significant trauma to their upper bodies.

SDPD Homicide investigator Capt. David Nisleit said the suspect may have changed his appearance and clothes. He's believed to be using public transportation as a means to get around the city.

Nisleit warned the public not to approach the suspect who he called "extremely dangerous" but to call 911 with any sightings.

The most recent attack occurred Wednesday, when a 23-year-old man was attacked while sleeping in a highly populated area of downtown San Diego. On Wednesday, homicide investigators described the man as in grave condition.

Angelo Denardo, 53, was found Sunday dead and set on fire along Morena Boulevard, east of Interstate 5, homicide investigators said.

The following morning, police found Shawn Mitchell Longley, 41, on Bacon Street in Ocean Beach. He had suffered blunt force trauma to his upper body and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Manuel Nunez Mason, 61, was also discovered Monday in San Diego's Midway District. He was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. As of Thursday, he was said to be in critical condition, Nisleit said.

No motive has been assigned to the attacks. The suspect was last spotted running north from the State Street area near the federal courthouse.

Homicide investigators warned the public not to approach the suspect but to call 911.

SDPD officials said they will be patrolling transit platforms Thursday and have officers at bus stops and on trolley platforms.

Anyone with information can call the San Diego Police Department's Homicide Unit at (619) 531-2293 or the Crime Stoppers anonymous tip line at (888) 580-8477. A $1,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest.

Homicide investigators want to question a man spotted on store surveillance video Sunday near the Morena Boulevard scene. The man purchased a gas can, a gallon of gasoline and a lighter about 15 minutes before De Nardo's body was discovered.

At a news conference on Wednesday, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer joined the San Diego Police Department to discuss a series of violent, deadly attacks on homeless victims that began July 3. “Our city has been shaken by these gruesome attacks. The last few days have been harrowing for those who struggle with homelessness,” Faulconer said.

NBC 7 tracked down the store clerk who sold a man fire supplies just 15 minutes before a fire was reported to police.

The clerk, who wished only to be identified as Elliott, said he is haunted by the encounter.

“If I knew what was going to happen, I would, like, examine him, but he was just another customer,” Elliott told NBC 7 in an exclusive interview.

Images: Person Sought for Questioning in Homeless Attacks

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