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December 23, 2015

Homeless man charged with strangulation murder of Center City psychiatrist

Psychiatrist found dead Monday morning in Center City hotel

Police Murder
Manuel Baez Philadelphia Police /for PhillyVoice

The Philadelphia Police have arrested Manuel Baez, 27, a homeless man, for the alleged murder Howard Baker, a psychiatrist found dead in a Center City hotel room on Monday.

Philadelphia police announced the arrest of a 27-year-old homeless man in the strangulation murder of a psychiatrist who was found nude on the floor of a Center City hotel room Monday morning. 

Wednesday afternoon police identified Manuel Baez as the man who has been charged in the murder of Howard Baker. Other reports have stated Baez is a prostitute who had been hired by Baker. 

Baker, who had a practice in the 1400 block of Walnut Street, was found dead at about 11 a.m. on Monday morning, in room 504 of the Rodeway Hotel at 1200 Walnut Street. Police said he was lying next to the hotel bed, his nude, lifeless body covered in a sheet, with a leather belt pulled tight around his throat.

RELATED ARTICLE: Police seek person of interest after psychiatrist found nude, dead in Center City hotel

On Tuesday afternoon, Captain James Clark of the city's Homicide Unit announced police were seeking a person if interest after surveillance video and hotel records showed that Baker had two male visitors to his hotel room on the night of his death.

NBC 10 reported that, according to Clark, Baez confessed to the alleged crime after being arrested, and that Clark said Baez had been hired for sex by Baker.

Clark said that the second individual to have visited Baker that night is also suspected of stealing the dead psychiatrist's wallet and backpack.