(MOBILE, Ala.) - An attorney representing a University of South Alabama student charged with murder said the man he killed was living with him for weeks.
Nineteen-year-old Brandon Ajizadeh admitted to the early Sunday morning homicide of his friend, 19-year-old James "Franklin" Dean, inside his on-campus apartment.
Prosecutors said Dean was stabbed 25 times with a butcher knife, but the suspect's attorney said his client was protecting himself from a forced sexual assault.
Dean's family refused to comment about the case, but neighbors said he was kicked out of the family home. Defense Attorney Habib Yazdi said Dean had been staying with his client for the past three weeks without the school's permission.
Dean is not a student at the university.
"The victim was staying there without permission of the university because he claimed he's homeless, and my client tried to help him until he found a home," Yazdi said.
According to USA student housing policy, a non-student can spend only two nights on campus, and must be signed in every night.
University officials admit it is hard to police the policy, especially at apartment style dorms like Delta Six where the murder took place.
The extent of the relationship between the two Murphy High School grads is unknown, but defense attorney Habib Yazdi said there was no romantic relationship between the two.
Prosecutors acknowledge the two's high school friendship, but would not comment on whether they were romantically involved.