MARTINEZ -- An Antioch transient was sentenced Friday to four years in state prison for fatally stabbing a homeless woman while she was high on methamphetamine and attacking him with an umbrella.

Roy Carl Crites, 59, in April pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter with use of a knife for killing 44-year-old Antioch transient Arlene Jefferson on Dec. 6, 2010.

Crites waived a year's worth of jail custody credits as part of a plea deal and will serve the equivalent of a five-year sentence, prosecutor Mary Knox said.

Crites and Jefferson were strangers before they came across each other at a bus stop at Delta Fair Boulevard and Buchanan Road in Antioch. Crites picked up a lotion bottle that had spilled from a shopping cart filled with Jefferson's belongings. Crites tried to hand the lotion back to her, but Jefferson -- who had a high level of methamphetamine in her system -- thought Crites was trying to steal it and began attacking him with a large golf umbrella, prosecutor Jason Peck said.

Crites retreated, only to come back a short while later to untether his dog from the bus stop. As Jefferson was attacking him with the umbrella a second time, Crites fatally stabbed her once in the chest with a small pocket knife, Peck said.


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Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.