San Mateo County

Killing, Dismembering of Elderly Man in San Bruno Was Over the Sale of a Space Heater: DA

The killing and dismembering of an elderly man in San Bruno last week was sparked by a dispute over the sale of a space heater, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office.

Police arrested 50-year-old David Stubblefield, who appeared in court Monday on charges that he murdered his elderly neighbor, 70-year-old Benjamin "Benny" Roybal.

Stubblefield and Roybal were friends, assistant district attorney Albert Serrato said.

"A dispute arose on March 11 involving the sale of a space heater, and during that dispute the defendent used pepper spray and eventually shot the victim in the chest, killing him," Serrato said.

After Roybal was reported missing, police investigated his disappearance which led them to Stubblefield's San Bruno home. When Stubblefield opened the door, police were overcome by a strong odor of a decaying body. Upon further investigation, dismembered body parts were found on the property in buckets full of chemicals, Serrato said.

Stubblefield is being held at San Mateo County jail on $10 million bail.

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