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Public Safety

Investigation Continues Into Killing Of Two Homeless Men In San Diego

San Diego police investigate the killing of a homeless man whose body was set on fire on Morena Boulevard, near Clairemont Drive, July 3, 2016.
10News
San Diego police investigate the killing of a homeless man whose body was set on fire on Morena Boulevard, near Clairemont Drive, July 3, 2016.
Flowers are on the ground near the site where 53-year-old Angelo DeNardo was killed, July 5, 2016.
Nicholas McVicker
Flowers are on the ground near the site where 53-year-old Angelo DeNardo was killed, July 5, 2016.

Authorities continued to look Tuesday for an unidentified man wanted for questioning in the killing of two homeless men in Bay Park and Ocean Beach and the wounding of a third.

The body of the first victim, 53-year-old Angelo De Nardo of San Diego, was found in flames in an open area off Morena Boulevard near Clairemont Drive shortly after 8 a.m. Sunday, authorities said. Witnesses to the attack told police they saw a man running across nearby Interstate 5, carrying a gas can.

San Diego police released this blurry photo from a convenience store video of a man wanted for questioning in attacks on three homeless men, July 4, 2016.
10News
San Diego police released this blurry photo from a convenience store video of a man wanted for questioning in attacks on three homeless men, July 4, 2016.

An autopsy determined that De Nardo had been killed before being set ablaze, police Lt. Manny Del Toro said Tuesday. The cause of death was not released.

Shortly before 5 a.m. Monday, a second homeless man was found in the Midway District bleeding from stab wounds to his upper body. He was found on Greenwood Street near Kurtz Street, police said. He was hospitalized with what authorities said were life-threatening injuries.

Less than 90 minutes later, another homeless man was found dead at the Robb Athletic Field in Ocean Beach. His name has not been released.

Surveillance cameras at a convenience store near the site of the initial killing captured grainy images of the man police believe is connected to the attacks.

"These crimes against some of our city’s most vulnerable people are absolutely reprehensible," Mayor Kevin Faulconer said in an email. "Our police department is doing everything in its power to find the person responsible and seek justice for the victims. Police officers are also conducting extensive community outreach to provide information to homeless individuals to keep them safe.”

The Alpha Project, a homeless service nonprofit, had people out on Tuesday warning the homeless to stay alert and in groups at night.

"We're doing wellness checks on folks that are down in the riverbeds and stuff," Bob McElroy, president and CEO of the Alpha Project, told KPBS Midday Edition on Tuesday.

McElroy said the attacks "resonated all the way down" to the Neil Good Day Center that his group operates in the East Village.

"We were talking to folks, and there's a lot of scared folks out there. This is extreme as it gets," McElroy said. "I've been doing this 30 years, and I've never seen something this extremely savage, so people are scared."

Anyone with information about the attacks was asked to call San Diego County Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477 or contact the agency online at sdcrimestoppers.org. Tipsters may remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.