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Man who allegedly killed Stockton karate instructor after grocery store argument to face murder charge, DA says

Rodney Hu, 45, owned a North Stockton karate studio. Police say he was run over by a car and killed following an argument at a grocery store.

STOCKTON, Calif. — The San Joaquin County District Attorney said she will file a murder charge against 34-year-old Dontae Wilburn, the man accused of running over a Rodney Hu, 45, in the parking lot of the Food Source grocery store.

Wilburn is currently at the San Joaquin County Jail on no bail and is due in court on Tuesday afternoon.

On Saturday afternoon around 3:30, an eyewitness told ABC10 they saw Hu and his wife walking from the from the store on West Hammer Lane with groceries in a shopping cart to their car.

Then Wilburn pulled up in an SUV and words were exchanged between him and Hu. The eyewitness said the SUV left, but then circled around the parking lot and again parked next to the husband and wife.

A number of people on scene witnessed what happened next.

"They then backed up and ran him over again. And, then when they went back to go forward again they ran him over again," said an eyewitness who did not want to be identified.

Police say Hu suffered serious injuries and died at a hospital. His wife suffered minor injuries and survived.

But,police say the initial argument between Hu and the suspect first happened inside the store. Details of what led to it have not been released.

Family and friends have continued to pay their respects with flowers and prayers at the door of the North Stockton karate studio belonging to Rodney Hu.

"He was an incredible martial artist. He understood the movements, the katas, how to generate power," said Anthony Olson, who knew Hu off and on as a karate student at the Rodney Hu Goju Karate facility for nearly twenty years.

To some, Hu was not just a karate instructor, but a mentor for his students.

"My son's real shy and Rodney seemed to pull out his- he overcame his shyness," said Anthony Asia whose 10-year old son was another one of Hu's students.

Asia stopped at the Rodney Hu Goju Karate studio to pay his respects.

"Just having him around or the family or anybody like that who crossed paths with this man. You feel blessed," said Rodney Hu's cousin, Al Uia.

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Yesterday, Stockton Police confirmed the eyewitness account of what happened after Hu confronted the suspect in the grocery store parking lot.

"At which point, the suspect drove his vehicle, striking the man and continued to run him over with the vehicle while leaving the parking lot," said Stockton Police spokesman Officer Joe Silva.

About two hours later, police say the suspect came to a crashing halt about a mile away on Kelley Drive. That's when his vehicle slammed into Amie Boggs' white mini-van as she was inside her home watching TV.

After her husband alerted her to what had just happened, she then raced outside and confronted the suspect.

"I was looking at my vehicle and, as I was walking around, the guy that hit my car was walking right past me and so I grabbed him and I asked him, 'Did you hit my car?'" said Boggs, who said the suspect was bleeding and appeared disoriented.

She let go of him as she heard lights and sirens. Police arrived and a short time later Wilburn was arrested.

"The suspect crashed the vehicle and then tried running away from our officers. And, while he was taken into custody, he did resist arrest and had to be tased by officers," Silva said.

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At least one other car was hit.

"He had the balance of a warrior and a good person. He was an incredible guy," said Olson.

Previously, Wilburn had been arrested on March 18, 2020 for an assault with a deadly weapon charge on the 9500 block of Kelley Drive in Stockton.

However, the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office says the District Attorney did not file charges.

A DA spokesperson said the reason no charges were filed is it was determined there were no deadly weapons found on scene.

Instead, it was a fist fight between two men or what is known as "mutual combat."

Wilburn has a long history of arrests in San Joaquin County.

According to the San Joaquin County Superior Court website, he has been charged with drug possession, burglary, first degree robbery and a felon in possession of a firearm in cases spanning from 2004 to 2012.


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