Men fatally stab former roommate over stolen PlayStation, deputies say

Suspects charged with first-degree murder in 'brutal' attack

By Adrienne Cutway - Web Editor

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - UPDATE: Deputies on Wednesday identified the victim in this case. Click here to read more.

Two men lured their former roommate to their unincorporated Maitland home and stabbed him to death because they suspected him of stealing their PlayStation, according to the Seminole County Sheriff's Office.

Seminole County Sheriff Dennis Lemma said the "brutal," "gruesome" attack was planned.

Deputies said they were called to the home on South Boulevard around 11 p.m. Monday after a man who lives at the home returned from a Tinder date and opened the door to find his roommates 21-year-old Ian McClurg holding a 7-inch chef's knife and 22-year-old Jake Bilotta stuffing a dead, bloody body in plastic bags. There was also a mop and duct tape nearby, according to authorities.

According to an arrest report, Bilotta was kneeling down, searching through a backpack next to the body amd said, "Give the (expletive) some credit, he put a good fight."

The witness, who had lived at the home for less than two weeks, ran back to his vehicle, where his Tinder date was still waiting, and called 911 to report what he saw, according to Lemma.

McClurg was barricaded in a bathroom in the home when authorities arrived while Bilotta fled barefoot out the backdoor of the home, authorities said. He was arrested about 30 minutes later. When authorities found him, he had blood on his hands, feet and clothing, the affidavit said.

Lemma said that Bilotta and McClurg were angry with the victim because they suspected he broke into the home a few days prior and stole a PlayStation 4. The victim, who has not been identified, lived at the home with Bilotta and McClurg for approximately two weeks, but had been evicted two weeks earlier for an unknown reason.

Bilotta and McClurg wanted revenge for the burglary, so they decided to lure him over to the home so they could attack him, according to authorities.

Deputies said they invited the victim over to the home claiming that they would all go to a party together, and when the victim arrived, Bilotta stabbed him multiple times and McClurg made sure that he could not get away. Lemma described Bilotta as the primary aggressor, but said McClurg is equally as responsible because he helped plan and execute the ambush.

"It is the most bizarre and disgraceful act that one can imagine ... over these gaming systems and things that have little value, definitely no association with the value of human life whatsoever. It's just absolutely bizarre," Lemma said.

Lemma said the suspects planned to put the victim's body in a plastic bags and dump it an unknown area. It's unlikely that they suspected either of their other two roommates to walk in on the attack, according to authorities.

The roommate who walked in after the attack and another roommate who was at work did not know what Bilotta and McClurg were planning, according to Lemma. He added that drugs were found inside the home but that was not believed to a motive in the attack.

“It looks like the pure motive is … revenge on the burglary. That was the motive in this particular case,” Lemma said.

Bilotta and McClurg are facing first-degree murder charges.

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