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San Diego County man suspected of poisoning wife

A San Diego County man has been arrested on suspicion of poisoning his wife with toxic chemicals once used to kill rats, sheriff’s officials said.

Race Remington Uto, 27, of Dulzura was booked into jail Thursday on three counts of attempted murder and two counts of poisoning food or a drink, according to jail records. He is being held in lieu of $2 million bail.

His wife, who is expected to recover, was hospitalized on March 15 with a then-unexplained illness. Tests detected an “extreme level” of thallium in her body, sheriff’s Lt. Ryan Rylaarsdam said.

Thallium is a toxic element that in the past was used in rat poisons and insecticides.

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The high levels of thallium in the woman’s system led medical staff and sheriff’s investigators to suspect she had been intentionally poisoned, Rylaarsdam said.

In the course of a joint investigation with the FBI, Naval Criminal Investigative Service and a San Diego County hazardous materials team, sheriff’s detectives “developed probable cause to believe the victim’s husband was responsible for her poisoning,” Rylaarsdam said.

On Thursday, Uto was taken into custody at the Naval Medical Center San Diego, Rylaarsdam said.

Detectives are still working “to answer questions regarding motive and other details,” Rylaarsdam said.

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david.hernandez@sduniontribune.com


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