California plumber allegedly fatally poisoned client with fentanyl and stole his money

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun4,2024

VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. (TCD) — A 38-year-old plumber faces 33 felony charges and over 100 special allegations after allegedly killing another plumber, fatally poisoning an elderly client for financial gain, and robbing a convenience store.

The Ventura County District Attorney’s Office first charged Rotherie Foster in January 2023 for the alleged murder of Jose Velasquez. According to prosecutors, Velasquez was reported missing in July 2022, and hikers found his remains in the Santa Monica Mountains several months later. The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office determined he died of multiple gunshot wounds.

In a press conference held May 22, Ventura County District Attorney Erik Nasarenko said Velasquez and Foster both worked as plumbers, and they knew each other. Further investigation revealed Foster allegedly “violently and forcibly” stole Velasquez’s ATM passwords and checks for gas, cash, clothing, and food. According to Nasarenko, authorities obtained cellphone records and forensic evidence from Foster’s van, leading to his initial arrest on charges of first-degree murder, eight counts of identity theft, two counts of forgery, and being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

After subpoenaing the defendant’s bank records, investigators reportedly found “suspicious” transactions that led to the discovery of additional alleged crimes and victims.

According to the district attorney’s office, investigators believe Foster “used his plumbing trade to identify potential targets for his crimes.”

Money from one alleged victim, 72-year-old Bill Levy, had reportedly been transferred into Foster’s account in January 2022, including a check worth thousands of dollars.

According to Nasarenko, Levy died on Jan. 10, 2022, of natural causes, but investigators recently determined “Levy actually died from intentional fentanyl poisoning.” The day after Levy’s death, the suspicious transactions reportedly began, and officials discovered Foster had performed plumbing work for Levy at his Granada Hills home.

Authorities arrested Foster on May 20 on suspicion of Levy’s murder. Nasarenko said Foster faces additional charges and special allegations, including first-degree murder, murder in the commission of a burglary, forgery, identity theft, grand theft, and intentional administration of a poison.

Foster is also accused of financial fraud against a client in Woodland Hills in December 2021 and an armed robbery at a convenience store in Fillmore in July 2022.

Foster remains held in the Ventura County Jail and is scheduled to appear in court on June 6.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “California plumber allegedly fatally poisoned client with fentanyl and stole his money”
  1. It’s truly horrifying to read about such a heinous crime committed by a fellow tradesman. This case is a stark reminder of the darker side that can lurk hidden beneath seemingly ordinary professions. Justice must prevail for the victims and their families affected by this tragedy.

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