SAUGUS (CBSLA.com) — The 56-year-old woman killed Monday in her Santa Clarita Valley home owned a popular Mexican restaurant in Valencia, employees there confirmed.
They identified the victim as Maria Lucatero. The workers said her husband is Jose and both owned Margarita’s Mexican Grill in Valencia.
The victim’s husband called 911 around 1 p.m. after he found his wife stabbed several times in her upper body inside their house on Castille Lane in Saugus, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Deputies said they arrested Jesse Lucatero, 24, in the killing late Monday night, and they were not searching for anyone else in the case.
Deputies said relatives and neighbors told them the victim’s son suffers from mental illness.
“A couple of times, he was naked in the neighborhood, which of course it’s really shocking and alarming. And that was in the past year or so,” Connie Green recalled. “The first time, one of the neighbors had a 14-year-old daughter. She looked out her bedroom window and said there was a naked man, and he was acting a little crazy.”
Neighbor James Hynes said “He didn’t seem right. I don’t think it was drugs or anything like that. I think may be he just had some mental problems.”
Hynes said Jose is always a kind neighbor. “I feel bad for him. I mean that’s his whole family in just a few minutes. He lost his son and his wife.”