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Clearwater police arrest man accused of killing his partner

Police say the man confessed to the killing, which took place at the Palmetto Park Apartments in the early hours of May 1.
Clearwater Police homicide detectives arreste Arthur Benjamin Jr. on Tuesday. He faces one count of first-degree murder in the death of Keri Washington.
Clearwater Police homicide detectives arreste Arthur Benjamin Jr. on Tuesday. He faces one count of first-degree murder in the death of Keri Washington. [ Clearwater Police Department ]
Published May 11
Updated May 12

CLEARWATER — The man who is accused of killing his domestic partner at the Palmetto Park Apartments was arrested Tuesday morning, according to the Clearwater Police Department.

Arthur Benjamin Jr., also known as Hadeeka Shabazz, faces one count of first-degree murder.

Benjamin, 49, confessed Tuesday morning to killing Keri Washington, according to police. Court records about the case say that Washington’s head was struck against a light pole by Benjamin between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. on May 1 during a domestic dispute.

Washington died from the trauma sustained to her head, the records said. She was discovered later in the morning by a relative who lived with her. The relative alerted authorities and said in a 911 call that Washington had been “beaten to death.”

The records said a relative told detectives that Bejamin and Washington had been in a domestic relationship for 15 years and that Benjamin lived in his car outside of Washington’s apartment. Another relative told detectives that the relationship had been “steady but violent,” and that arguments became more frequent in the week leading up to Washington’s death.