Washington: A 24-year-old Indian-American has been charged with the murder of his high school friend in the US state of Maryland after a night of drinking and birthday celebration turned into a tragic jealous rage.
Rahul Gupta was being held in the Montgomery County jail on USD 2 million bond, according to court records. He was pursuing a master`s degree in biomedical engineering at George Washington University.
Gupta attacked Mark Edward Waugh, 23, with a knife on Sunday after he found that his girlfriend was cheating on him with his high school friend, The Washington Post reported.
Police said they arrived at a Montgomery County high-rise apartment at 3:25 am (local time) after they were informed about an unknown trouble inside the flat.
Both Waugh and Gupta attended Langley High School in McLean, Northern Virginia, where they took several Advanced Placement and honours classes together.
Arrest records in the case, in which detectives provided their account to support a charge of second-degree murder, paint a picture of several friends going out on Saturday to celebrate Gupta`s birthday.
But things later appear to have turned to alcohol-fuelled confusion and - at least based on the perception of one member of the party - a jealous rage.
As the officers made their way into the apartment, they saw blood on the walls of the kitchen and living area and saw a man - later identified as Gupta - lying on the ground. He was covered in blood. The officers asked whether he was hurt.
"I don`t think so," Gupta said, according to the detectives` account. "What`s going on?" one of the officers asked him.
"I walked in on my girlfriend cheating on me," Gupta said, according to the charging papers. "My girl and my buddy were cheating. My girl was cheating with my buddy. I walked in on them cheating and I killed my buddy."
It remains unclear, even to the police, whether what Gupta said he thought was going on between the two was true, according to a law enforcement official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case is pending.
The officers found another man lying on the floor. It was Waugh, and he was covered with blood and was unresponsive, according the police. He had "multiple cutting and defence-type injuries to his body" and was pronounced dead, according to court records.
Police say a knife was used in the attack.