A suspect was arrested in the fatal stabbing of a woman who was walking her two dogs in the La Sierra neighborhood of Riverside Saturday morning, officials said.
Officers responded to reports of a woman down just before 7:30 a.m. in the area of Golden Avenue, just north of Stonewall Drive, said Officer Ryan Railsback, spokesman for the Riverside Police Department.
Responding officers found a victim, later identified as 64-year-old Ke Chieh Meng of Riverside, on the ground bleeding from her abdomen area and suffering from stab wounds, Railsback said.
The woman was taken to a local hospital where she succumbed to her wounds, police said.
Shortly after the victim was pronounced dead, the Riverside police dispatch center received reports from the victim’s neighbors regarding what they described as a transient woman walking through their yards and acting suspicious, Railsback said.
Police were able to locate and detain the woman who they later identified as Darlene Stephanie Montoya, a 23-year-old transient from Monterey Park, officials said in a news release.
A preliminary investigation revealed that Meng was walking her two small dogs along Golden Avenue Saturday morning when she was “randomly confronted and attacked by the transient woman,” police said in a news release.
During the attack, the suspect stabbed Meng and then fled the scene, police said.
Detectives later determined Montoya was the attacker and placed her under arrest. She was later booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center for murder, weapons violation, and suspicion of being under the influence of an illegal substance, Riverside police said in the news release.
Montoya is being held without bail, police said, adding that she had been arrested by Riverside officers earlier in the week after she had attacked a woman with a skateboard on Tyler Avenue near the 91 Freeway overpass.
Officers said the earlier incident occurred on Tuesday, and police had arrested and booked Montoya into jail for assault with a deadly weapon. However, due to the current emergency bail schedule during the COVID-19 pandemic, police she was released on a “Notice to Appear” citation.
Riverside police initially stated that they believed Saturday’s attack “was completely random.” However, police later stated that the incident is still under investigation and there are no further details to release at this time.
Anyone with additional information is urged to contact Detective Dan Mercadefe at 951-353-7103 or DMercadefe@RiversideCA.gov, or Detective Brett Stennett at 951 353-7213 or BStennett@RiversideCA.gov.
Those wishing to remain anonymous can email firstname.lastname@example.org or utilize the Riverside Police Department’s mobile app “Submit a Tip” feature while referencing report number 210009338.