A homeless man was stabbed to death behind a vacant home in Dayton’s Twin Towers neighborhood Thursday morning and police said they don’t yet know what the motive behind the crime was.
Curtis Gray, 27, was arrested at the scene on Quitman Street moments after officers responded to a 911 call about a man screaming for help.
Dayton Police Sgt. Richard Blommel said the first officers on the scene at about 1 a.m. saw Gray standing over the body of Daniel E. Mooty and chased him a short distance before taking him into custody.
Gray reportedly dropped a knife, which was collected as evidence.
“We haven’t determined any motive and he’s not talking to us,” Blommel said of their interrogation of Gray.
Gray, of Dayton, is being held in the Montgomery County Jail on suspicion of murder. Prosecutors had not approved official charges against him as of Thursday evening.
Neighbors reported seeing one man chasing another then one woman heard shouting.
“I didn’t really see anything. I could hear a gentleman screaming,” said Christy Collins. “He kept screaming, ‘somebody help me, call the police, he’s killing me’.” She reported that the man’s screams stopped before police arrived.
Blommel said some of the other houses on the block are vacant and Collins was the only person who called 911.
When officers arrived Mooty, 51, was deceased. He suffered multiple stab wounds.
Gray has previously been booked into the Montgomery County Jail on traffic offenses, according to court records, but Blommel said he didn’t know of any violent history. According to a police report he is employed at Thai 9 restaurant.
Mooty, who police confirmed was currently homeless, had felony convictions for breaking and entering, forgery and drug possession dating back to 1999.
Blommel said detectives have not determined how or if the two men knew each other prior to Thursday’s incident.