DENVILLE — An argument led a man to stab his 68-year-old mother and set the house they shared on fire Monday morning, officials said.

Anthony Citro was arrested and charged with murder, arson and weapons offenses.

Neighbors called police to the house on Chestnut Hill Drive East about 7:25 a.m. after hearing yelling coming from the house.

Police found Citro, 41, with blood on his pants and elbow and smoke coming from the house, according to the affidavit filed by investigators in Superior Court of Morris County.

The person who called 911 said they asked Citro, who was sitting on the front steps of the house, where his mother was, to which he responded, "she's dead," according to the affidavit.

Firefighters found the body of his mother, Eileen Citro, 68, lying on the floor of the kitchen on the second floor of the house. She had been stabbed multiple times in her back and torso and police found two bloody knives near her body, according to the affidavit. There were also signs of a struggle, with broken household items in the kitchen.

An investigation determined that a bookcase, a wall and "numerous personal items" were set on fire in a first floor bedroom using butane, according to the affidavit.

After being read his rights, Citro repeated to police that his mother was dead and admitted to starting the fire, according to the affidavit.

Officials have not said whether Citro explained his motivation.

Neighbors told police that Citro appeared be under the influence of drugs at the time of the fire and had a history of drug dependency. He also has a history of mental illness, according to the affidavit.

Citro was also charged with second-degree aggravated arson, third-degree possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose and fourth-degree unlawful possession of a weapon. He was being held pending a court appearance. New Jersey 101.5 did not know Wednesday whether he had an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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