The FBI and the Navajo Department of Criminal Investigation have arrested a New Mexico resident on suspicion of murdering his own uncle, as reported by Farmington Daily Times.
Darren Benally, 25, allegedly beat Norman Tyler, 50, to death using his bare fists after the pair got into an argument during the disposal of trash.
Benally was charged with second-degree murder, among other offenses, in connection with the March 27 incident.
Tanisha Tyler, the deceased’s niece, told authorities that she saw the 25-year-old suspect punch the man in the head and in the face more than 20 times, according to the arrest affidavit.
“I was in shock because I grew up with my uncle. He was like a father figure to me,” she said, noting that she never thought the suspect would “rip” the man out of her life.
The Navajo Police Department initially responded to a call about a man with a head laceration. Medics rushed to revive Tyler, originally labeled simply as “John Doe,” but were unable to do so and he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Benally was at the scene and is alleged to have told authorities that he got into a fight with his uncle as the pair put away trash.
Tyler worked as an electrician and took care of his 89-year-old mother, who is nearly blind. A motive for the killing has yet to be revealed. A preliminary and detention hearing for Benally will take place Monday in Albuquerque.
[Featured Image: San Juan County Adult Detention Center]