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DSA In the News

Accused neckslasher finally cleared for court

Published on 1/8/2011

The coastside man accused of sawing at the neck of his live-in girlfriend with a serrated knife in early December was finally medically cleared for court, more than a month after his hospitalization for an undisclosed condition that befell him at the time of arrest.

David Jon Vanalstine, 56, was charged in absentia with attempted murder and using a knife against a woman who he dated in high school and currently shared a mobile home with in Moss Beach. Authorities have been unable to say why Vanalstine was unable to leave the hospital because of patient confidentiality laws.

What is known is that Vanalstine was hospitalized after police responded to the Pillar Ridge Estates residence on Dec. 2. The 56-year-old victim told dispatchers she had been stabbed by Vanalstine who was still inside the home.

Vanalstine allegedly held the woman down on the couch by her hair and began sawing at her neck with a serrated knife, according to the District Attorney’s Office. Vanalstine allegedly stopped when the woman’s friend arrived. Deputies found her outside with a 10-centimeter laceration to her neck, from her carotid artery to her ear, and Vanalstine also at the scene, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Both were taken to the hospital where the woman underwent surgery and Vanalstine began treatment for his condition.

The attack came days after Vanalstine was sentenced to 45 days in jail for a 2010 misdemeanor drunk driving conviction with priors. Police believe the victim turned Vanalstine in on the charge. Judge Cliff Cretan stayed the sentence until Jan. 22.

Vanalstine appeared in court briefly Wednesday but declined to enter a plea. He returns to court Monday afternoon to identify his court-appointed attorney and set further proceedings.