Vista courthouse
North County Regional Center, courthouse in Vista. Photo by Chris Stone

A man who stabbed another man dozens of times near his home in San Marcos was sentenced Friday to 26 years to life in state prison.

Kellon Talib Razdan, 21, was convicted by a Vista jury of first-degree murder and an allegation of using a knife in the Aug. 16, 2021, killing of 20-year-old Aris Keshishian.

Prosecutors said Keshishian was walking his dog near his home on Via Vera Cruz when Razdan stabbed, cut, or slashed him 44 times in an apparent ambush. Following the attack, a bloodied Keshishian ran to a neighbor’s home and told her, “Tell my mom I love her. Tell my family I love them,” according to testimony from Razdan’s trial.

Keshishian died of his injuries at a hospital.

Razdan was arrested later that day at a hospital where he’d arrived for treatment of various injuries to his hands, including a finger with a missing tip. The severed portion of his finger was later found at the crime scene, according to testimony.

Prosecutors allege Razdan made internet searches leading up to the killing that included, “how to remove fingerprints,” and “city that doesn’t solve murders.”

According to a report from the San Diego Union-Tribune, prosecutors said Razdan told sheriff’s deputies that he believed someone had been hacking his Snapchat account and thought Keshishian was the culprit, though searches of both men’s phones did not yield evidence of such activity.

At Razdan’s sentencing hearing, the victim’s father, Henrik Keshishian, called the defendant “a monster” and described how he and Aris’ sister and mother discovered him bleeding on the ground outside their neighbor’s home.

Henrik said his son was the “baby of our family” and “a lighthearted young man who would make the best out of every situation and brighten the atmosphere wherever he went.”

Keshishian’s older sister, Adrineh, called Aris “a wellspring,” and said, “He engaged in and with his life with gentleness. He cultivated courage, compassion and connection. Aris’ love is palpable. His presence, his love, his smile, illuminating. He is healing. He is love.”

Razdan apologized to the victim’s family during a statement at the hearing.

He said, “As of Aug. 16, 2021, everything has been blemished and tainted…Nothing has been the way it should be and I am the cause.”

City News Service contributed to this article.