Rhode Island

Rhode Island Man Accused of Killing His Landlord With Ax Following Argument

The name of the man killed has not been released by authorities


A Rhode Island man is charged with murder in the death of his landlord, according to NBC affiliate WJAR.

Police were investigating a homicide at a home on West Main Road in Portsmouth on Monday night, WJAR reported, adding that police said the victim was a man.

News media observed police tape blocking off the home. Animal control was also spotted with a few animal crates outside the house.

Jacob Morrill, 24, was taken into custody Monday and is now charged with first-degree murder. He was ordered held without bail at his arraignment Tuesday in Newport District Court.

He is accused of killing Xue Feng Wu, 50, of Tiverton, on Monday night in the West Main Road home that he rented from Wu after the two got into an argument in the garage. Police said Morrill admitted hitting Wu with a small, hand-held ax.

Wu's family members asked police to check on him after they hadn't heard from him for several hours.

Portsmouth Police Chief Brian Peters said Morrill called police hours later saying he had struck and killed Wu. He even told police where to find the body, just feet from the home.

Portsmouth is a town of about 18,000 people that occupies that northern half of Aquidneck Island, which is shared with Middletown and Newport. The town's last murder was in 2016.

Contact Us