Crime

Woman alleges prior abuse by man accused of stabbing her at Cambria home

Brian Michael Rodriguez, 25, of Lompoc was arrested Sunday, July 27, 2014, on suspicion of attempted murder. Original story »
Brian Michael Rodriguez, 25, of Lompoc was arrested Sunday, July 27, 2014, on suspicion of attempted murder. Original story »

A Lompoc man accused of attempting to kill his pregnant ex-girlfriend had stabbed and threatened to kill her several times before he was arrested in Cambria in July, the woman testified in court Wednesday.

Brian Michael Rodriguez, 25, is facing 27 counts of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting corporal injury, torture, mayhem, criminal threats, willful harm to a child, child endangerment and attempting to dissuade a witness.

With his previous criminal history, he faces up to 25 years in state prison.

On July 27, sheriff’s deputies responded to a report that a woman had been stabbed at a home on the 6200 block of Green Valley Road in Cambria.

When they arrived, officers quickly apprehended Rodriguez as the suspect. The alleged victim was taken via ambulance to a nearby hospital, where she was treated for a serious but not life-threatening stab wound to the back.

In at a preliminary hearing in San Luis Obispo Superior Court on Wednesday, Rodriguez’s former girlfriend — whose name was not released by the court because she is allegedly a victim of domestic abuse — testified that prior to his arrest Rodriguez had stabbed her on numerous occasions with pocket knives, screwdrivers and a large bread knife.

With several three-inch-long scars visible on her left arm, the woman testified that she and Rodriguez shared a “rocky relationship” and that he was very possessive, often accusing her of wanting to be with other men.

Rodriguez — the biological father of two of her children, including the unborn child — had been in and out of sober-living facilities combating methamphetamine and alcohol addiction, she testified.

When presented with photographs by Deputy District Attorney Greg Devitt, she recalled three instances when Rodriguez stabbed or slashed her in several places on her body and how she crudely treated the wounds herself after Rodriguez threatened her not to tell anyone.

Devitt asked whether the numerous wounds required the woman to wear clothes that concealed her scars.

“I don’t think anybody is proud of any wounds when they’re on your body," she responded.

The woman testified that on July 26, she, Rodriguez and the couple’s three children had driven to Cambria to visit friends when Rodriguez got drunk and again began accusing her of wanting to be with other men.

"He told me we were in the middle of nowhere and if I had gone missing nobody would know,” she said.

Rodriguez allegedly became violent and the couple’s friends tried to intervene, telling the woman to hide in a bathroom. Seven children were in the home at the time and were taken to a bedroom while one of the residents called the police, she said.

But the assault continued in the bathroom, the woman testified.

“He told me if he was going to jail he’d better just get me over with so he can get what’s coming to him," she said.

By the time officers arrived, the woman had suffered a 5.5-inch stab wound to the back.

The woman was about eight weeks pregnant at the time.

The hearing is scheduled to resume Thursday morning.

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