Suspect arrested in Lakeland fatal stabbing

Mathew Clement Bell, 44

LAKELAND, FL (WFLA) – One man was killed, another was injured in a fight at a rooming house in Lakeland Friday night, according to Lakeland Police.

It happened at 720 Johnson Ave. around 11 p.m. Police responded to a report of stabbing at the location and found two men with stab wounds. One of the victims, Peter Latoski, 44, identified the suspect as Mathew Bell, 44. Latoski told police that Bell was asked to leave the rooming house after a disturbance. Bell refused, and the second victim, Mario Acosta, 58,  tried to escort him out. According to LPD, a fist fight broke out between the two and Bell pulled out a knife. He stabbed Acosta, and when Latoski tried to intervene, he was stabbed too, police said.

Bell fled, and both victims were taken to Lakeland Regional Health Hospital, where Acosta later died from his injuries. Latoski’s injury was serious but not life-threatening, according to LPD.

Bell was arrested Saturday evening without incident for first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder and taken to the Polk County jail.

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