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DSA In the News

Man to trial for sawing at roommate's neck

Published on 6/9/2011

The Moss Beach man will stand trial for allegedly sawing at the neck of his female roommate with a serrated knife because she reported him for driving while intoxicated.

David Jon Vanalstine, 57, has pleaded not guilty to charges including attempted murder, assault, domestic violence and using a knife but a judge found sufficient evidence after a preliminary hearing Tuesday with four prosecution witnesses. Judge Stephen Hall took a day to consider the evidence and on Wednesday concluded Vanalstine should stand trial. 

Hall also dismissed a charge of making a criminal threat.

Sheriff’s deputies arrested Vanalstine at his Pillar Ridge Estates residence Dec. 2 after responding to a call by the 56-year-old victim. She 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.

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. That term is now on hold pending the outcome of the attempted murder case.

Vanalstine remains in custody without bail.