A Templeton man convicted of second-degree murder in the stabbing death of his girlfriend has switched attorneys and will likely have his sentencing postponed.
Philip Thomas Hanes, 58, was scheduled to be sentenced to at least 16 years in state prison on Monday in San Luis Obispo Superior Court.
On Jan. 29, however, he hired a new attorney in an effort to either request a new trial or appeal his murder conviction.
On Feb. 2, Santa Barbara attorney Stephen Dunkle filed a motion to postpone Hanes’ sentencing in order to give him time to review transcripts of the trial, conduct his own investigation and draft a motion for a new trial.
Hanes will still appear in court in order to waive his right to be sentenced within 20 days of his conviction.
Dunkle confirmed Wednesday that he is now representing Hanes but declined to comment further, citing the ongoing nature of the court proceedings.
Court records show Dunkle was hired Jan. 29.
Deputy District Attorney Greg Devitt, who prosecuted Hanes, also declined to comment on the case other than to say he can’t be sure prior to Monday’s hearing how the case will proceed.
Hanes was arrested the night of June 4 after deputies received a 911 call from his girlfriend, Tina Marie Beddow, 32, who claimed Hanes stabbed her after she tried to leave him.
Deputies arrived to find her mortally wounded and lying in a pool of blood in the kitchen. She later died in the ambulance.
Hanes maintained throughout the trial that Beddow was hallucinating from recent use of methamphetamine and charged at him with a knife. He said the stabbing was an accident that occurred as the two grappled for the weapon.
Devitt characterized Hanes, a former PG&E engineer, as controlling and argued that he became enraged when Beddow tried to leave him. Several investigators testified that Hanes attempted to clean blood while Beddow lay dying.
Hanes, Dunkle and Devitt will be in court Monday to discuss the continuance.