Attempted Murder Charges Added in Almaden Crime

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013  |  Updated 6:31 PM PDT
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Attempted Murder Charges Added in Almaden Crime

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Prosecutors today added attempted murder charges in Santa Clara County Superior Court against three young San Jose men who allegedly capped a two-day armed robbery spree last week by invading the home of an elderly couple.

Deputy District Attorney Alaleh Kianerci filed an amended criminal complaint against Miguel Marez, 19, James Palmerson and Erza Santana, both 18, to include attempted murder against each one.

The new charges come from the stabbing of a victim during a robbery the three allegedly pulled on Monterey Highway in San Jose on Jan. 19, Kianerci said.

Prosecutors claim the men then committed three more violent armed robberies in San Jose over two days, including two on Jan. 20 in which the victims were beaten and the home invasion robbery the next day.

All three defendants, represented by court-appointed lawyers, appeared in court today before Judge Hector E. Ramon at the Hall of Justice and waived their rights to a preliminary hearing. Ramon set their next hearing for March 7 to continue the plea phase of their case as co-defendants, Kianerci said.

The three were arraigned Monday on charges contained in the district attorney's first complaint, including robbery, false imprisonment, assault with a deadly weapon and kidnapping, Kianerci said.

The three attempted murder counts bring to 15 the total felony charges each man faces in the four armed robberies, Kianerci said.

The kidnapping charge is from a Jan. 21 attack on an elderly couple when the defendants pushed through their front door, bound them with duct tape and forced them into another room before burglarizing their home near Almaden Expressway, Kianerci said. Marez, Palmerson and Santana are accused of stealing the couple's two cars and abandoning both vehicles the following day, one parked near U.S. Highway 101 and the other dumped into the Uvas Reservoir near Morgan Hill. Palmerson and Marez were arrested in San Jose on Jan. 24 and Santana was taken into custody a day later.

San Jose police recovered all of the items taken from the couple's home.

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