|For Immediate Release
October 26, 2011
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
MAN FACES TRIAL FOR STABBING-MURDER OF FORMER HOUSEMATE
SANTA ANA – A man faces trial tomorrow for stabbing and murdering his former housemate. Oscar Robles Diaz, 26, Santa Ana, is charged with one felony count of murder and a sentencing enhancement for the personal use of a deadly weapon. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 26 years to life in state prison. Opening statements are expected to begin tomorrow, Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011, in Department C-40, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. The time is to be determined.
This is a re-trial of this case, as a previous jury was unable to reach a decision on May 18, 2011, as to whether the defendant should be convicted of first or second degree murder.
At approximately 2:00 a.m. on May 28, 2009, Diaz is accused of drinking alcohol, singing, and talking with several people outside of a residence in Santa Ana. All of the men drinking with the defendant were current or previous residents in the home, which was divided into several living spaces.
Diaz is accused of getting into a verbal argument with 49-year-old Leon Torres, who had moved out of the residence one week earlier. The defendant is accused of stabbing the victim 20 times, murdering him. Diaz is accused of then fleeing the scene. Witnessed called 911.
The defendant was arrested at 8:00 a.m. that morning by the Santa Ana Police Department, who investigated this case. At the time of his arrest, Diaz is accused of being in clothing with dried blood on it. Diaz is accused of being linked to the murder through blood DNA evidence at the scene.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Susan Price of the Homicide Unit is prosecuting this case.