Providence PD charge suspect in woman’s death with murder

The man arrested Friday after a woman was found dead inside an old Admiral Street business in Providence has now been charged with murder.

Providence Police said in a press conference Monday that Isaiah Araujo, 20, broke into Joe’s Sandwich Shop Friday afternoon.

While inside, the owner of the building, 50-year-old Mai Jweinat, stopped by to pick up something when she encountered Araujo.

“We believe she was startled by the intruder who was already inside. And a struggle ensued between Aroujo and Jweinat and he killed her,” said Captain Tim O’Hara with Providence Police.

Investigators said Jweinat used to run a business out of the property and lived there on a part-time basis with her family, according to police.

Family members, including her son and daughter, were concerned when they didn’t hear from Jweinat and they went to check on her.

Another fight started between the siblings and Araujo and the son was taken to the hospital.

Araujo left the scene and was found an hour later with injuries of his own hiding in brush.

“He broke into the building to steal things. There’s no known relationship between the Jweinat family and Mr. Aroujo. He did have a living situation in the area,” O’Hara said.

Police added that Araujo had been homeless for “a couple of days.”

Jweinat’s daughter who had the confrontation with Araujo told ABC 6 off camera that her mother was “a community mom,” adding that if Araujo needed help to get back on his feet her mother would have offered him a bed.

A vigil is planned in the near future for Jweinat.

Members of the community were pitching in on Monday to board up the building to give the family a sense of security and for the chance to heal.

Araujo is also facing one charge of breaking and entering as well as two charges of assault with a deadly weapon, on top of the murder charge.


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