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SAN DIEGO – A 56-year-old man accused of repeatedly beating a 25-year-old victim over the head with a crowbar while trying to steal money from him and his girlfriend at a gas station in Valencia Park pleaded not guilty Wednesday to premeditated attempted murder and other charges.

neighbour courtClare Lyle Neighbour faces life in prison plus seven years if convicted, said Deputy District Attorney Chris Moon.

Neighbor — held on $1.5 million bail — was arrested Monday afternoon in Huntington Beach in connection with the attack early last Saturday morning on Carlos Ramirez at the Express Gas Station on Imperial Avenue, according to San Diego police Sgt. Louis Valenzuela.

Ramirez was hospitalized in serious but stable condition, but his prognosis is unclear, Moon said.

Detectives from San Diego identified Neighbour as a suspect on Sunday and learned he had ties to Huntington Beach, then notified authorities in the Orange County city to be on the lookout, the sergeant said.

Moon said the victim and his girlfriend pulled into the gas station around 2:30 a.m. Saturday, about the same time as the defendant.

The prosecutor said Neighbour asked the victim for money and the victim declined and went to pay for his own gas.

Neighbour retrieved a crowbar from the trunk of his car and threatened the victim’s girlfriend, then struck Ramirez in the neck as he approached, sending the victim to the ground, Moon alleged.

He alleged the defendant continued to hit the victim in the head with the crowbar, striking him at least 25 times.

Moon said Neighbour — a former resident of Washington state — appeared to be living out of his truck at the time of the attack.

The victim’s girlfriend, Sylvia Rivera, spoke to reporters after Wednesday’s arraignment.

“I want him (the defendant) to pay for what he did, and I want justice for Carlos Ramirez,” she said.

In addition to attempted murder, Neighbour is charged with aggravated mayhem and attempted robbery. He will be back in court March 8 for a readiness conference and March 12 for a preliminary hearing.

gas station beating suspect’SAN DIEGO — A 56-year-old man was in custody Tuesday on suspicion of brutally beating a 25-year-old man over the head with a crowbar while trying to steal money from patrons of a gas station in Valencia Park, police said.

Clare Lyle Neighbour was arrested Monday afternoon in Huntington Beach in connection with the attack early last Saturday morning on Carlos Ramirez at the Express Gas Station on Imperial Avenue, according to San Diego police Sgt. Louis Valenzuela. Ramirez remained hospitalized today in serious but stable condition, he said.

Detectives from San Diego identified Neighbour as a suspect on Sunday and learned he had ties to Huntington Beach, then notified authorities in the Orange County city to be on the lookout, the sergeant said.

Huntington Beach police arrested Neighbour and turned him over to San Diego police the same day, Valenzuela said.

Online jail records showed Neighbour was booked into San Diego Central Jail around 10 p.m. Monday on suspicion of attempted murder and attempted robbery.

SAN DIEGO – A driver was filling his gas tank in Southeast San Diego when he brutally beaten by a man who had been begging for gas money Saturday.

gas station beating suspect’Police Saturday searched for a white Mazda truck with a white camper shell, and its driver, described as a heavy-set white man in his 50s with a long beard. He was last seen wearing a green camouflage coat, military boots, and an orange-and-white shirt from the Miami Dolphins or University of Miami.

The victim was in intensive care at a hospital Sunday following the attack around 2:45 a.m. at the Express Gas Station at 5109 Imperial Avenue, just east of Euclid Avenue, San Diego Police Sgt. Ray Battrick said.

Witnesses said the suspect drove into the gas station and told the clerk he needed gas but had no money, Battrick said. The clerk rebuffed him, and the suspect went over to another fueling car and approached the woman on the passenger side.gas station suspect’s truck

“He said I need some money for gas, give me a dollar,” Battrick said.

When the woman refused, Battrick said the suspect then went back to his car, got a crowbar, and returned to the other car where the man was outside filling his gas tank.

“Words were exchanged and the suspect hit him with a crowbar numerous times in the head, then got back into his car and left,” Battrick said.

“It was a very vicious attack and a man sustained very serious injuries,” San Diego Police Lt. Paul Rorrison said. ”It appears this suspect was very angry and very deliberate in his attack.”

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