Man pleads guilty to 4th of July murder of father-in-law

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Joseph Henry Garcia

SAN DIEGO — A man who fatally stabbed his father-in-law after the victim made disparaging remarks about his daughter at a Fourth of July gathering in Logan Heights pleaded guilty Friday to voluntary manslaughter.

Joseph Henry Garcia, 23, will be sentenced on Jan. 22. He faces up to 12 years in prison but could get probation.

Deputy District Attorney Rebecca Zipp said Garcia stabbed Hermeneglido Parra at least 36 times before fleeing to Mexico with his wife. Garcia returned to the United States the next day and turned himself in, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing in September.

Garcia’s brother, James Corella, testified that the 54-year-old victim appeared intoxicated at the party. Parra said to those gathered at his residence that “all of the women who have lived at this house are mine,” according to Corella.

Corella testified that the victim suggested his daughter’s unborn child was going to be a girl and said he would “give her what I gave her mother.”

San Diego police Detective Cory Gilmore testified that Garcia told his brother after the killing, “He (Parra) raped my wife! He raped my wife!”

As they left the victim’s home, Garcia told his brother, “Sorry you had to see that,” Gilmore testified.

Officers responding to a 911 call on the Fourth of July went to the 3100 block of National Avenue, near Memorial Park and east of Barrio Logan, shortly before 7 p.m. They found an unconscious Parra with multiple upper body stab wounds.

Paramedics rushed to the scene, but Parra was pronounced dead a short time later, SDPD Lt. Paul Rorrison said.

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