EL CAJON (CNS) - A handyman who allegedly bludgeoned a San Diego State University administrator to death when she tried to break off a three-year romantic relationship last year must stand trial for murder, a judge ruled Wednesday.
Paul Carl Tomasini, 64, is charged in the Sept. 30 death of 62-year-old Mary Shojai, who was the director of student disability services at SDSU. Judge Daniel Goldstein ruled that enough evidence was presented at a preliminary hearing at the El Cajon courthouse to order Tomasini to stand trial May 28. A readiness conference was set for March 13.
At Tomasini's arraignment last year, prosecutor Amy Colby told a judge that Shojai had been scheduled to pick up a friend at the airport, but failed to show. When the traveler went to the woman's home in the 10500 block of Strathmore Drive, she saw the defendant pacing inside, Colby said.
According to the prosecutor, both the friend and the defendant called law enforcement, and deputies who responded around 10 p.m. found the mother of two adult children on the floor in a pool of blood.
Investigators found two large candlesticks and a wooden mallet nearby, she said, adding that blood and hair were found on the base of the mallet and the candlesticks.
An autopsy determined that the victim had been struck 17 times, according to Colby.
Tomasini faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted, and an additional year for each of three weapons allegations lodged against him.
According to San Diego State's website, Shojai worked for 37 years at SDSU, where a colleague called her "a transformational leader" who got things done.
Only two days before preview night at Comic-Con kicks off and the streets of downtown San Diego on Monday night were being transformed in Comic-Con fever.
The San Diego City Council on Monday rejected Mayor Kevin Faulconer's plan regarding short term vacation rentals, but in a 6 to 3 vote approved City Councilwoman Barbara Bry's regulations plan.
The San Diego International Airport was granted $12.1 million in the Federal Aviation Administration's latest round of awards announced Monday.
A harbor seal with the most severe neck wound that SeaWorld's rescue team had ever seen was returned to the ocean after undergoing rehabilitation at the San Diego theme park.
Burglars hit a Little League snack bar sometime this weekend, ransacking it and taking items of food. The Vista National Little League's snack bar was torn apart and hundreds of dollars' worth of food was gone.
A dispute over perceived animal abuse on a Core- Columbia roadside led on Monday to a stabbing that left a pedestrian nursing a minor wound and a woman behind bars, authorities reported.
A horrifying scene at the zoo in New Orleans over the weekend after a jaguar escaped from its enclosure and killed several animals before finally being captured.
Triple Crown winner Justify has re-located to Del Mar where trainer Bob Baffert is keeping him under observation after swelling in his left front ankle emerged two weeks ago.
A man accused of stabbing a fellow passenger during a fight on a Greyhound bus, forcing the driver to pull over on the freeway near University City, pleaded not guilty on Monday to an attempted murder charge.