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Not Guilty Plea Entered In March Killing of Rohnert Park Costco Clerk

A Rohnert Park man pleaded not guilty in Sonoma County Superior Court this afternoon to first-degree burglary and the stabbing murder of a man during what police say was a dispute about a woman both men knew.

Daniel Dieters, 25, is accused of killing Roy Kauwe, 22, in Kauwe's Rohnert Park apartment on March 20.

Judge Dana Simonds ruled against a defense motion by defense attorney Daniel Russo to lower Dieters' bail from no bail to $500,000 and transferred the case to trial court where a preliminary hearing may be set on June 20.

Russo said Dieters' family has ties in Sonoma County and he is not a flight risk.

[Previous: No 'Love' - Just 'Rage' - in Rohnert Park Homicide, Says Dad of Stabbing Victim.]

Deputy District Attorney Tashawn Sanders said Dieters faces 25 years to life in prison for the violent stabbing murder and should be held under no bail.

Rohnert Park Public Safety Department Sgt. Jeff Justice said Dieters called police around 11:10 p.m. on March 20 and said he had just killed his friend at the Edgewood Apartments in the 400 block of Laguna Drive.

Police contacted Dieters in the parking lot of the apartment complex when they arrived, then found Kauwe's body in the apartment, Justice said. Kauwe suffered multiple stab wounds in the neck area, and a knife was found near his body, Justice said.

A 23-year-old woman associated with Dieters and Kauwe also was found outside the apartment, Justice said. She told police she arrived at Kauwe's apartment just before Dieters called 911, Justice said.

Justice said the murder occurred during a dispute regarding a relationship both men had with the woman. He said Dieters lived with the woman and had a relationship with her for several years.

Joe Kauwe, the victim's father, has disputed the characterization of the slaying as a love triangle murder.

At Dieters arraignment in March he said his son and the 23-year-old woman were friends and both worked at  Costco in Rohnert Park, but that his son was trying to be transferred to a Costco store in Hawaii.

"This is a crime of jealousy. The girl was going with this person (Dieters) seven years. He (Dieters) went into a rage. The act was hideous," Kauwe said.

Kauwe said his son was 5 feet 9 inches and was slightly built. Dieters is has a larger build and appeared to be about 6 feet 4 inches this morning.

"He didn't have a chance. He would not have argued with anybody. He's an incredibly peaceful person," Kauwe said about his son.

[Previous: Man Booked for 'Love Triangle' Murder in Rohnert Park.]

Kauwe said his son worked at Costco for about a year in the deli and bakery departments and recently got an apartment.

Kauwe said he doesn't know how his son knew Dieters. He said his son's car broke down and his daughter drove his son and the 23-year-old woman to his son's apartment.

Rohnert Park police said Dieters lived in an apartment on the same street.

--Bay City News

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