Pacific Beach man pleads guilty to killing uncle
by NEAL PUTNAM
Published - 05/15/19 - 09:05 AM | 872 views | 0 0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A Pacific Beach man who stabbed his uncle to death has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and has abandoned his insanity plea.

Deputy District Attorney Scott Pirrello said Monday that Randy Bautista Baisa, 39, faces a sentence of 15 years to life in prison for the slaying of Merlino Baustista, 66.

San Diego Superior Court Judge Stephen Stone set sentencing for Aug. 12. Baisa remains in jail without bail.

He entered his insanity plea last July but withdrew the plea shortly after pleading guilty to second-degree murder.

Baustista lived with his nephew in the apartment they shared at 1855 Diamond St. on Jan. 17, 2018. He was stabbed 18 times, according to the county medical examiner’s office.

San Diego Police detective Sgt. Luke Johnson testified earlier that Baisa admitted to stabbing his uncle after he was arrested. Johnson and six others testified in the preliminary hearing in April, 2018.

A neighbor recalled a memory of three years earlier when the victim told him his nephew had been hallucinating and had asked him to call 911.

Baustista was found in the hallway. Paramedics took him to Scripps La Jolla Hospital, but he was pronounced dead at 2:01 a.m., about an hour after the attack.

Another detective said there were hand-written instructions for Baisa that were found taped to a wall, which suggested that if he becomes manic to “stay in Pacific Beach.” The detective said Baustista slept on a futon bed in the living room and let his nephew sleep in a bed in the only bedroom.
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