Arraignment for man accused in Santee murder postponed

Paul Carl Tomasini arrested in death of woman

SAN DIEGO - A woman found dead last weekend at her East County home was a San Diego State University administrator who was allegedly slain by a handyman she may have been dating, authorities said Wednesday.

Deputies responding to a report of a disturbance and possible fatality in the 10500 block of Strathmore Drive in Santee found the body of 62-year-old Mary Shojai in her house shortly before 10 p.m. Sunday.

Outside the residence was an acquaintance of Shojai's, 64-year-old Paul Carl Tomasini, suffering from non-life-threatening stab wounds, sheriff's Capt. Duncan Fraser said.

Tomasini was arrested on suspicion of murder and hospitalized under guard.

Authorities have not revealed how Shojai died or a disclosed a suspected motive for the slaying, though Fraser told reporters some of the victim's neighbors believed she had a romantic relationship with Tomasini, a handyman and fellow Santee resident.

The suspect's arraignment had been scheduled for Wednesday afternoon but was expected to be postponed due to a jail medical hold, according to the District Attorney's Office.

Shojai, the mother of two adult children, was director of student disability services for SDSU and had worked at the eastern San Diego campus for 37 years, according to a memorial posting on the university's website.

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