Estranged husband accused of killing wife, friend - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Estranged husband accused of killing wife, friend in Sabre Springs

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Valerie and Mel Marabante Valerie and Mel Marabante

SABRE SPRINGS (CNS) - A man and woman found dead in a condominium in Sabre Springs were identified Monday, and the woman's estranged husband was arrested on suspicion of murder.

Melchor Fonseca Marabante, 41, is suspected of shooting his 23-year-old wife Valerie Marabante and Bernabe Villamar around 3 a.m. Sunday, according to authorities and broadcast reports.

The bodies were found about 8:15 a.m. when a law enforcement officer was sent to the condominium at 10946 Evening Creek Drive to check on them, San Diego Lt. Kevin Rooney said, without saying who notified authorities.

The woman's husband was arrested at a hospital in Murrieta and returned to San Diego, where he was expected to be charged with two counts of murder, police said.

Rooney declined to say what brought Marabante to the hospital. Homicide detectives searched the condo and a home in Murrieta, Rooney said. He said the couple had rented the condo, but that the husband had recently moved out.

Neighbors who saw the couple move in about a month ago told the newspaper they were unaware the husband moved out -- reportedly on Valentine's Day.

THIS IS A STORY UPDATE. Read CBS 8's earlier story below.

SABRE SPRINGS (CBS 8) - A man and woman were found dead Sunday in a condominium in Sabre Springs, and the woman's estranged husband was arrested on suspicion of murder.

The bodies of 23-year-old Valerie Marabante and the man were found at 8:18 a.m. during a welfare check at the Evening Creek apartment homes community at 10946 Evening Creek Drive, said San Diego police Lt. Kevin Rooney.

Neighbors reported hearing gunshots early Sunday morning. Rooney said the victims suffered traumatic injuries, but he did not confirm whether they had been shot.

The woman's estranged husband, Mel Marabante, 41, was arrested at a hospital in Murrieta and taken back to San Diego, where he was expected to be charged with two counts of murder, Rooney said.

He would not say why the man was at the hospital. State records show both Mel and Valerie Marabante are registered nurses.

The identity of the deceased male has not been released pending notification of his family.

Homicide detectives executed search warrants at the condo and a residence in Murrieta, Rooney said. He said the couple had rented the condo, but that the husband had recently moved out.

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