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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Apparent stabbing brings Santa Clara’s first homicide of year


    When Gani Alcantara walked to his car parked along Monroe Street in Santa Clara on Sunday morning, he saw what he thought was a drunk sleeping it off on a patch of grass next to the sidewalk.

    But there was blood on the man’s hands, and a crimson trail into the street.

    The man was dead, of an apparent stabbing — the first homicide of the year in Santa Clara.

    A moment earlier, at 7:25 a.m., someone had called the police, and within minutes officers were surrounding Alcantara in front of the Old Orchard Apartments, across the street from a Kwik Serv gas station between Scott and Los Padres boulevards.

    Police released few details, saying only that the corpse was that of a 31-year-old man, the victim of a homicide.

    Neighbors said it looked as if the entire city police force had converged onto the crime scene. Half a city block was cordoned off by yellow police tape, and neighbors gathered to speculate what might have happened. Some heard the man had been stabbed, but police wouldn’t confirm that.

    A trail of blood extended from the area near the gas station to where the victim was found. Police covered most of the body with a yellow tarp, but onlookers could see the victim was missing one shoe. He apparently lost it as he ran across Monroe. On Sunday, crime scene investigators marked a black shoe found in the middle of the street as evidence.

    Police investigators appeared to be focusing on a two-story apartment building

    next to the Kwik Serv. They were walking in and out of a first-floor garage there all morning. A group of people stood around on the balcony of the building, which was also within the crime scene area.

    “”There’s always stuff going on there — parties, people yelling in the street,”” said Heather Lange, 40. who lives across the street. “”There’s been a lot of police activity over there.””

    Police declined to say whether an altercation might have started there before the victim fled across the street.

    Employees of the Kwik Serv, who opened the gas station at 6 a.m., said they didn’t hear anything early Sunday morning.

    Santa Clara police Lt. Phil Cooke would say only that the death looked suspicious, and “”it’s being treated as a homicide. What caused the death and how it occurred is too early to say.””

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