Andrew Ward, accused of stabbing his 12-year-old half-brother to death, pleaded not guilty Thursday to first-degree murder and child abuse. (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
Austin Tapia. (Source: Facebook)
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
Andrew Ward, the man accused of stabbing his 12-year-old half-brother to death, pleaded not guilty Thursday to first-degree murder.
The 27-year-old Phoenix man told police he "just felt like killing" after the body of Austin Tapia was found with multiple stab wounds in the family home on March 12.
Ward's next appearance in Maricopa County Superior Court is scheduled for May 14 before Commissioner Richard Nothwehr.
Phoenix police Sgt. Steve Martos said the suspect called police from a convenience store near the family home in the area of 35th Avenue and Deer Valley Road about 5:30 p.m. the day of the homicide.
Police found Ward at the convenience store a short time later with blood on his hands and clothing and a knife in a pocket.
Austin's mother and two sisters, ages 14 and 19, had gone to dinner that evening and said Austin had declined to join them. They said the passed Ward as he was headed the home, and when they returned, they were greeted by police.
Family members said Ward had a history of violence and substance abuse, and police said Ward told them nothing happened between the two that led to the stabbing.
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