Judge orders four to stand trial for Santos stabbing

Christina Moran

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

Superior Court Judge Cynthia Bashant ruled that the four men accused of stabbing Mesa College student Luis Santos near San Diego State back in October 2008 will stand trial for murder on April 8.

After a five and a half day preliminary hearing, Judge Bashant ruled that there was sufficient evidence for the accused: Rafael Garcia, Ryan Jett, Esteban Nunez and Leshanor Thomas to stand trial for murder. All four men have pled not guilty, and their attorneys have state their clients’ actions were in self-defense. Jett and Thomas are still in custody, but Nunez and Garcia remain free on bail.

All four defendants maintain that Santos and his friends started the fight on Oct. 4 near the Peterson Gym on 55th Street. The defense also claims that Santos flashed a concealed gun right before the fight began, and that both groups were armed with knives. These claims have not been substantiated.

Part of the testimony used to send the defendants to trial was that of a close friend of all four men, John Murray, who was not at the fight, but in San Diego with the four. Murray stated that Nunez and Jett admitted to stabbing someone in the fight. All four men face a sentence of more than 2 years if convicted. A date for the trial has yet to be announced.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email