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Posted: 5:27 pm PDT April 20, 2005
SAN JOSE, Calif. – A San Jose man accused of fatally stabbing his 2-year-old niece Saturday was formally arraigned today in Santa Clara County Superior Court.
Emil Paguio, 33, has been charged with one alleged count of assault on a child resulting in death, also referred to by prosecutors as child abuse homicide.
Deputy District Attorney Dan Nishigaya said Paguio faces a maximum sentence of 26 years in state prison.
Paguio was denied bail and will next appear on April 27 to enter a plea on the charges.
The alleged murder occurred around 12:40 a.m. at Paguio’s home at 918 Gilchrist Walkway No. 2. Paguio and his brother’s family lived together at the home.
Officers responding to the residence on reports of a toddler stabbed discovered Paguio standing outside the home covered in blood.
Entering the home, officers then discovered 2-year-old Francesca Paguio suffering from two stab wounds to the chest and abdomen. She was rushed to a local hospital where she died a short time later.
The girl’s father, Eric Paguio, apparently witnessed his brother stab his daughter with a large kitchen knife, according to court documents.
Eric was working on his computer when Emil knelt down beside him and said: “Please take care of me.”
Emil then reportedly stated that someone was trying to kill him.
Eric continued working when, just minutes later, he heard his daughter screaming.
According to court documents, Eric turned around to see his daughter sitting on the ground and Emil holding a knife in his right hand.
Then, Emil allegedly stabbed the girl in the abdomen.
Eric reportedly ran to help his daughter and grappled with Emil, eventually disarming him and screaming for help.
“Obviously this is a horrific set of facts,” Nishigaya said. “It’s a shock to all that this has occurred and to such a young victim.”
Prosecutors are looking into possibly charging Emil with attempted murder for allegedly also trying to stab his brother during the incident.
Statements from Emil’s family portray him as man who had become increasingly paranoid and struggled with mental health issues as well as drug abuse.
Emil would apparently go days without uttering a single word, becoming reclusive and spending much of his time in his room.
Court documents revealed that Emil was concerned that a neighbor was trying to kill him.
During police interviews, Emil stated that he heard voices that instructed him to hurt or kill someone.
He told investigators he saw his niece playing on the floor and grabbed a knife from the kitchen. He then allegedly walked over, got down next to the girl, and stabbed her.
Deputy Public Defender Molly O’Neal, who is representing Emil, said her client has suffered from mental health issues for as many as 10 years.
He was reportedly taking the prescription drug Seroquel, which is used in the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
O’Neal said that Emil was also taking the antidepressant Paxil and was under the care of a physician.
Emil has lived in the U.S. for 16 years and it was just one month ago that his brother’s family moved from the Philippines.
O’Neal said she is definitely looking into the possibility of an insanity defense based upon the fact that Emil has a documented case of mental illness.
Copyright 2005 by Bay City News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.