Man accused in stabbing attack appears before judge - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Man accused in stabbing attack appears before judge

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VISTA (CNS) - A man accused of attacking three people on three consecutive days over the Thanksgiving holiday -- almost killing one person -- pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of premeditated attempted murder, aggravated mayhem and other counts.

Kristopher Scott Nesmith, 21, was ordered held on $2 million bail.

Deputy District Attorney Tracy Prior said that on Nov. 27 about 6 a.m., Nesmith punched and choked 51-year-old Michael Jelnick as the victim was loading up his car for Thanksgiving.

Neighbors heard Jelnick scream, "Help, he is going to kill me," and Nesmith walked away from the scene, Prior said.

The next morning on Thanksgiving, Nesmith allegedly attacked and stabbed 67-year-old Michael Piscitelli in Vista after asking the victim for directions. The attack left Piscitelli with life-threatening injuries, Prior said.

Last Friday, witnesses saw the defendant attacking his wife in a parking lot, and Nesmith was later linked to the attacks on Nov. 27 and Nov. 28, the prosecutor said.

Nesmith had been living in Vista for about a week and the Infantry Marine recently received a bad conduct discharge following a court martial, Prior said.

Nesmith faces life in prison if convicted, Prior said. A readiness conference was scheduled Dec. 13 and a preliminary hearing for Dec. 18.

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