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VENTURA COUNTY NEWS

Oxnard Man Guilty in Brutal Attack on Teen

Courts: David Oliva faces 20 years to life in prison for premeditated attempted murder fueled by jealousy. Victim was shot and stabbed.

June 18, 1999|TRACY WILSON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A 21-year-old Oxnard man was found guilty Thursday of premeditated attempted murder for brutally attacking a teenager and leaving him for dead on the Oxnard Plain.

David Oliva faces 20 years to life in state prison for the crime committed Sept. 26, 1996, which prosecutors say was motivated by jealously over a girl the defendant and victim had both dated.

"I'm extremely pleased," said Deputy Dist. Atty. Bill Haney after the verdict was announced. "It's an amazing survival story. I doubt in my life I will ever meet anyone tougher than that kid. . . . He just had it in him to survive."

At 16, Frank Olivas, a former Oxnard resident, was shot three times and then stabbed repeatedly in the neck, head and chest.

Olivas was left for dead on a dark stretch of Wood Road in the unincorporated area of the county near Oxnard, but he managed to walk 200 yards to a house. On the way, an off-duty California Highway Patrol officer spotted him and called police.

Olivas testified against Oliva in court last week.

He told the jury that he, Oliva and two other young men had been cruising the Oxnard Plain for more than an hour, smoking marijuana. At one point, he said, they stopped the car and he got out to relieve himself. That is when he was shot.

Three bullets struck his neck, thigh and lower back, according to court testimony. Olivas was then stabbed in the chest, head and neck. He identified Oliva as his assailant.

During the five-day trial, defense attorney James Farley raised questions about the prosecution's evidence, however, suggesting that one of the other men in the car could have been the attacker.

The jury began its deliberations early Thursday afternoon and returned about 2 1/2 hours later with a verdict.

Oliva was convicted of premeditated attempted murder. The jury also found he used a firearm and inflicted great bodily injury. The allegations are expected to extend the minimum amount of time Oliva must spend in prison before becoming eligible for parole. A sentencing hearing is set for July 22.

After the verdict was read, Haney asked Superior Court Judge Brian J. Back to order Oliva immediately placed in the county jail. He has been free on $250,000 bail.

Farley objected to the request, telling Back that his client is not a flight risk or a threat to the community.

The judge disagreed and Oliva was taken into custody. He is now being held without bail.

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