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Two Florida soldiers stabbed to death

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A Fort Drum soldier was arrested at a hotel in southern Ohio early Wednesday on a warrant charging him in the stabbing deaths of two fellow servicemen at an apartment near the military post in northern New York.

Joshua Hunter, 20, and the two slain soldiers listed each other as friends on their MySpace pages.

The bodies of Waide James, 20, and Diego Valbuena, 23, each with multiple stab wounds, were found Tuesday in an apartment complex housing mostly military families in Evans Mills, N.Y., near the post's main entrance. Fort Drum is the 10th Mountain Division's home base.

Specialists James, of Cocoa, and Valbuena, of Port St. Lucie, served as motor transport operators, according to Fort Drum's public affairs office.

A warrant was issued charging Joshua Hunter, 20, with two counts of second-degree murder, county prosecutor Cindy Intschert said at a news conference. Based on a tip provided by New York authorities, Hunter was arrested at a hotel in Wheelersburg, Ohio, early Wednesday, said Capt. David Hall of the Scioto County Sheriff's Office.

Hunter did not have a lawyer. He will likely be appointed one during arraignment today at Portsmouth Municipal Court, Hall said.

Hunter's father, Jim Hunter of Ona, W.Va., told the Associated Press in a telephone interview that his son spent 15 months in Iraq and had been back for about four months. He described his son as "a pretty outgoing kid" who was married, had no children and lived off base.

Two Florida soldiers stabbed to death 12/02/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 2, 2009 11:25pm]
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