Transient jailed for allegedly killing Santee man, 68, by pushing him onto train path

Front Street Central Jail in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Stone

A passing passenger was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of indiscriminately killing a 68-year-old man on New Years Day by pushing him into the path of an oncoming train at the Old Town transit hub.

Ryan Michael Rukstelis, 26, was taken into custody in the 2200 block of Park Boulevard in Balboa Park shortly after 3 p.m., according to the San Diego Police Department.

Rukstelis and the victim, Martin Andara de Santee, had just gotten off a southbound trolley at the Taylor Street depot around 6:15 a.m. on Saturday when the suspect allegedly pushed the older man off the boarding platform and then s ‘fled, said SDPD Lieutenant Andra Brown. .

Andara fell to the side of a passing train, suffering fatal injuries. He died at the scene.

Police have not disclosed what led detectives to identify Rukstelis, who does not have a permanent home address, as Andara’s suspected killer.

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