Prosecution delivers opening statement in police slashing trial

The prosecution delivered its opening statement Tuesday afternoon in the trial of a man accused of resisting arrest and slashing an Upland police officer with a pocket knife.

Johnny Joe Magallanez, 28, is accused of attacking the officer in December 2007 after the officer tried to arrest him on suspicion of burglary at Mervyn’s at 233 S. Mountain Ave.

According to online court records, Deputy District Attorney Carlo DiCesare delivered a 10-minute opening statement Tuesday afternoon in West Valley Superior Court.

Magallanez’s defense attorney, Margis Matulionis, declined to give an opening statement. He will have an opportunity to give an opening statement at the start of the defense portion of the trial.

Here’s the initial story on his arrest:

Attempted-murder count filed

Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Ontario, CA) – Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Author: Rod Leveque, Staff Writer

RANCHO CUCAMONGA – Prosecutors filed charges of attempted murder of a peace officer, assault with a deadly weapon and resisting arrest Tuesday against a man accused of slashing a police officer on the arm at an Upland department store.

Johnny Magallanez , 27, is scheduled to be arraigned today in West Valley Superior Court.

Police say Magallanez , a parolee from the Northern California town of Corning, slashed the officer with a folding pocket knife Friday night at Mervyn’s at 233 S. Mountain Ave.

The officer’s injuries were not life-threatening. He was treated and released that night.

“The indication is that he tried to go for the officer’s neck and face,” Deputy District Attorney Carlo DiCesare said. “Fortunately, it didn’t work.”

Authorities allege Magallanez had piled up merchandise near a door inside the store when the officer approached.

The officer, believing Magallanez was preparing to steal the items, took the man outside to arrest him on suspicion of burglary. A fight ensued, and Magallanez pulled the weapon and stabbed at the officer as the two grappled, authorities said.

The officer subdued Magallanez without using any of his own weapons, police said.

DiCesare said the officer did not know Magallanez had a knife until the struggle ended and he saw his own blood.

Magallanez is being held without bail at West Valley Detention Center.

Court records indicate he was on parole stemming from a felony gun charge in Glenn County. He was sentenced to three years in prison in December 2005.

Meanwhile, prosecutors declined to file charges against Tina Magallanez , a woman who was arrested Friday alongside Johnny Magallanez . The relationship between the pair is unclear.

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