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Manhattan man arrested in Coney Island ‘love triangle’ stabbing death

Police arrested a Manhattan man for the Sunday stabbing death of another man in what is being deemed as a "love triangle." (Photo by Todd Maisel)

A 33-year-old Manhattan man was arrested for the vicious stabbing death of a Bronx man on Sunday morning in what police say was a “love triangle” in a Brooklyn home.

The suspect was identified by police as Michael Israel, of Second Avenue in Manhattan. Police say he was picked up Wednesday night and brought to the 60th Precinct after he was on the lam from the morning of the stabbing. He was taken to criminal court early this morning, police say.

He was being charged with murder in the first and second degree as well as two counts of burglary and one count of assault with a weapon. It was not clear if the weapon has been recovered by the time of publication.

Israel is being charged with the Sunday morning stabbing death of James Santiago, 42, of the Bronx in what police believe was a “lovers triangle.” Police now say that he is the ex-boyfriend of the woman who was with the victim at the time.

Police say Santiago was with the unidentified woman, at about 2:30 a.m. Sunday in her home on West 15th Street when Israel allegedly barged in on them. First, he punched the woman in the face and then a fight ensued and Santiago was allegedly stabbed numerous times in the torso by Israel, officials claim.

Israel and the woman then allegedly dragged the mortally wounded out to the cold street to the sidewalk outside the house where the naked and bleeding man tried to flag down passing vehicles, who drove around him and left him to die. Police were eventually called and he was rushed to Coney Island Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Officials say they are holding the woman as a “person of interest” for allegedly helping to drag the mortally wounded man into the street while completely naked. Police sources said a blood trail led back into the home, which is also the location of an auto wholesaler.

Security video from the street, law enforcement sources noted, allegedly showed Santiago desperately trying to wave down passing motorists — but all of them drove by the victim without calling 911.

Israel is set to be arraigned on Thursday morning in Brooklyn Criminal Court.

Todd Maisel