NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Police say a man fought with officers responding to an apartment on fire early Saturday morning where, after the flames were put out, the body of another man was found covered with stab wounds.

The NYPD responded to a 9th-floor apartment at 409 East 120 St. in East Harlem around 4:30 a.m. after getting a 911 call about the fire.

At the scene, 31-year-old Aljo Mrkulic, who police described as “combative,” allegedly got into a fight with the officers in order to prevent them from getting into the apartment.

After getting into the unit and extinguishing the blaze, officers found the body of a 30-year-old man who had multiple stab wounds all around his body. EMS pronounced the man dead at the scene.

The victim has been identified as Christopher Rodriguez.

Mrkulic was taken into police custody and transported to NYC Health & Hospitals/Metropolitan for treatment and observation. He is being charged with murder, arson and assault on a police officer.


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