Man accused of killing roommate returned to Duval County

Stephen Bentley makes his first appearance in Duval County.
Stephen Bentley makes his first appearance in Duval County.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A man accused of killing his 59-year-old roommate last week has been moved to the Duval County jail and made his first appearance in court Wednesday morning.

Stephen Bentley is charged with murder in the stabbing death of JoeNathan Williams, who was found dead by the Willow Lakes Apartments manager who went to check on him.

Police said Williams was found with severe trauma caused by either a hatchet, machete or large knife.

Investigators said neighbors saw Bentley with blood on his hands and leaving the area before Williams' body was found. Police said they got tips that Bentley was in Tampa.

He was found Thursday night in Lutz and arrested by U.S. Marshals.

Police said they don't yet know the motive for the killing.

Bentley is a registered sex offender and ex-con. He served two brief prison sentences out of Highlands County in the mid-2000s, one for failing to register as a sex offender. He was arrested in 2010 in Clay County for failing to register there as a sex offender.