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Phoenix man arrested in park strangulation case

PHOENIX -- A Phoenix man arrested in a homicide case told police he may have killed the knife-wielding victim in self-defense.

Bond was set at $250,000 Monday for 26-year-old Patrickson Joe Benally at his initial court appearance Monday.

Benally is being held on suspicion of first-degree murder, aggravated robbery and the theft of a credit card.

Court documents show Benally told Phoenix police he believed he strangled a man at Solano Park.

Benally says he had been drinking at his cousin's house and went to the park looking for more alcohol.

He says he fought with a man and put him in a choke hold and then fled the scene.

Police found Jimmie Kerley's body at the park on June 22 and he apparently was strangled with a thin piece of rope.

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