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Man Faces 3 Murder Charges

Crime: Estranged boyfriend is accused of stabbing to death a Sun Valley woman and their two young daughters.

January 29, 2002|ANDREW BLANKSTEIN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A Stanton man accused of stabbing to death his estranged girlfriend and their two young daughters in their San Fernando Valley home was charged Monday with three counts of murder, prosecutors said.

Julian Beltran, 27, appeared in Van Nuys Superior Court to face the charges, but his arraignment was postponed until Feb. 11. Prosecutors said he could be eligible for the death penalty because there were multiple victims.

Beltran is being held without bail at the Twin Towers jail in the slayings of Maria Michelle Barahona, 24; Marissa Beltran, 6; and Natalie Beltran, 2.

According to authorities, Beltran called California Highway Patrol dispatchers twice from his cellular phone Jan. 23, the night of the killings, telling a dispatcher that "somebody was hurt" at a house on the 7400 block of Craner Avenue in Sun Valley.

About an hour later, authorities said Beltran called again, telling another dispatcher, "I have a knife and I am sorry I hurt her."

Orange County deputies found Beltran standing in front of his car in Stanton, bleeding from cuts on both wrists and waving a knife.

Deputies at the scene believed Beltran wanted them to shoot him to death, Orange County sheriff's spokesman John Fleischmann said. Instead, deputies fired four beanbags at him after he refused to surrender.

Beltran, a trucker who had been with Barahona on and off for about eight years, later told authorities about the killings and where they could find the bodies, Orange County sheriff's officials said.

Beltran and Barahona had no documented history of verbal or physical abuse, Los Angeles Police Det. Mike Coffey said.

"This jumped from a quiet, reserved individual to a breakup to some more arguments and then slaughtering everyone," Coffey said.

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