OGDEN, Utah — The family of a 23-year-old man murdered in his apartment gym continues to grapple with the gruesome details of his case.
The last time Sheena Belinti saw her little brother, she was helping him move into his apartment in Ogden.
“He was so happy. 'He was like, ‘Mom, I got my own place and I have my own place to stay,’” she recalled.
She still can’t fathom that it was the same place police say he was randomly attacked and murdered.
“It feels like a dream — is this really happening? Are we really doing this?” she said.
Tyler Belinti, 23, was the second victim in a Utah County man’s killing spree two and a half weeks ago.
Police say 28-year-old Christian Taele from the small town of Lake Shore randomly killed Ryan Hooley in Spanish Fork on July 8. He then attacked Tyler Belinti in his apartment gym the next day.
Police documents say Taele told officers a “higher power” directed him to “purge the city.”
“It still hasn’t fully hit yet,” said Sheena Belinti.
Tyler Belinti left his community on the Navajo Reservation to move and graduate from the Department of Labor’s Job Corps program. In his three years in Ogden, he proudly told his family he could see his life working out in Utah.
“It’s throwing us for a loop because we don’t know how to deal or cope with it,” she said.
Taele’s next court appearance in Weber County will be in September for a competency review.
“It’s kind of hard to look at the person who did this to us, to take someone that we love so much away from us,” said Sheena Belinti.
She remembers her brother as the positive member of the family. She said he was always happy and would go out of his way to cheer others up.