Witness describes volatile encounter between homeless men that led to fatal stabbing outside Riverside Walgreens

RIVERSIDE, Calif., — Although details are still emerging, officials have confirmed that a volatile encounter between two armed men outside a Riverside Walgreens ended with one man dead and another man detained yesterday afternoon, Wednesday, Jan. 19. Witnesses have said the deadly incident began when a man approached a group of individuals while armed with a crowbar and that one of the men from the group was defending himself from the crowbar-wielding man when the fatal stabbing occurred.

Citing the claims of self-defense and the need for further investigation, officials yesterday said that although a man was detained at the scene of the fatal encounter, they were not yet ready to call him a suspect and acknowledged that the detained man may have been defending himself from the other man’s attack when the deadly stabbing occurred.


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City of Riverside police and fire personnel were dispatched to the Walgreens parking lot in the 10900 block of Magnolia Avenue around 1:48 p.m. after receiving reports of a stabbing that had just occurred, Riverside Police Officer Ryan Railsback said from the scene of yesterday’s fatal incident.

Officials arrived within minutes and found a bloody crime scene outside the Walgreens where they detained one of the involved men and began treating the other, according to Railsback.

“Responding paramedics began treating the victim of a stab wound to his upper body but unfortunately he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased at the scene,” Railsback explained; adding, “We do have a person, a possible suspect detained right now.”

A handcuffed and detained man with visible head and facial injuries is seen being loaded into an ambulance after a fatal stabbing outside a Riverside Walgreens yesterday afternoon. Officials have said the man may have been acting in self-defense, and that their investigation is continuing. Lone Wolf News and Media/OnScene TV photo

“What we’re looking into right now is they might have known each other, so there might have been a little history,” Railsback continued. “We don’t know how far back but it seems they might have known each other. It could’ve been some conflict or altercation that just kind of continued recently and resulted in this altercation where the victim gets stabbed.”

Asked at the scene if the deadly encounter may have been the result of self-defense Railsback replied, “We don’t know right now. We just don’t know.”

“I don’t think we are prepared to call the suspect an actual suspect, but we’re also not prepared to call him a victim either. So, we’re going to try to find that out during this investigation,” Railsback went on to say; adding, “We just want to let everyone know that we do have a person detained that was involved, so there are no outstanding suspects.”

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As the investigation was continuing, a handcuffed man was seen being loaded into an ambulance to be taken to an area hospital. He had multiple visible injuries, including a bloody head wound, swollen-shut eye, and large laceration to his left cheek.

Watching from nearby, a man who identified himself as Zayne told Lone Wolf News and Media/OnScene TV that he was with a group of homeless individuals outside the Walgreens when the deadly incident occurred. (See interview in video below.)

“We were just sitting around talking with friends and we seen this guy coming and he sat down next to us,” Zayne explained.

The man, whose name he did not know, “seemed to be having a bad day,” he continued; adding, “But he didn’t bother us, so we didn’t bother him.”

Zayne went on to describe that as the group sat outside the business eating and talking, another man walked up to the group while armed with a crowbar.

“He was raging at us with the crowbar,” Zayne described. “Then finally, the (alleged suspect) was like, ‘go back, go back! I’m gonna defend myself’, and he started defending himself.”

Neither the witness nor Railsback were able to say what exactly may have led to the fatal altercation and Riverside PD’s investigation is continuing.

Contacted for further information, Railsback had not gotten back to RCNS before publication of this article.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information becomes available.

Click any image to open full-size gallery.

Lone Wolf News and Media/OnScene TV photos above, video below.

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.