Friend Flips on Pol's Son - NBC Bay Area

Friend Flips on Pol's Son

There is bad news for the son of former state assembly speaker Fabian Nunez.



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    19 year-old Esteban Nunez.

    A man charged in the stabbing death of a San Diego college student has pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against three co-defendants, including the son of a former state assembly speaker.

    Esteban Nunez, Rafael Garcia, Leshanor Thomas, and Ryan Jett were charged with murder and other counts stemming from the Oct. 4 stabbing death of Luis Santos, 22.

    Prosecutors say Garcia pleaded guilty Thursday to felony conspiracy to destroy evidence, including a bloody shirt.

    In exchange, a murder charge against Garcia was dropped.

    As part of a plea bargain, Garcia agreed to testify against three co-defendants, including Esteban Nunez, the son of former state Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez.

    Nunez and three friends were involved in the deadly confrontation last October near the San Diego State University campus. Santos was killed and two other men were stabbed in the confrontation.

    The men were arrested in Sacramento County in Dec. then driven to San Diego in four separate vehicles.

    In April, witnesses to the fatal stabbing and its aftermath give a horrible portrait of the 19-year-old son of former California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez.

    One defendant said "let's show them how we do it in Sac-town," prosecutor Jill DeCarlo said. "The defendants were looking for trouble and they bragged that they were all carrying knives."

    A witness told police how furious Esteban Nunez and his friends were about getting kicked out of a fraternity party and how they vowed revenge. Another said Nunez declared that he "got one of them" as they left a group of men, including one who said he had just been stabbed.  Others describe Nunez trying to destroy evidence on the banks of the Sacramento River on Oct. 4, the day of the stabbing.

    Nunez's attorney suggested the defendants were acting in self defense because one of them, Jett, was stabbed. But, the prosecutor says the victims were unarmed.

    Esteban Nunez's father, Fabian Nunez, 41, was the longest-serving speaker in California's era of legislative term limits. The Los Angeles Democrat cultivated a close relationship with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger that led to their agreement on a landmark law to greatly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in California.