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Carlos Dominguez, suspect of three stabbings in Davis, deemed mentally fit for trial in court hearing

The decision comes after Reales Dominguez spent months in a state hospital for mental disorder

 

By ALMA CULVERWELL city@theaggie.org 

On Friday, Jan. 5, Yolo County Judge Samuel McAdam read a confidential medical report stating that Carlos Reales Dominguez, former UC Davis student and suspect of three stabbings last year, was deemed mentally fit to stand trial. 

The hearing, which lasted nearly 10 minutes, came after Dominguez spent three months at a state hospital after previously being deemed unfit for trial. A preliminary hearing for the trial is now set for Feb. 26 at 9 a.m.

“The court received a report from the state hospital certifying that Mr. Dominguez has been restored to competency,” Wendy Wilcox, executive assistant to the Yolo County District Attorney, said via email. “[Dominguez] will be returned to Yolo County and will appear in the Superior Court on Jan. 5 at 9 a.m. in Department 10. If there are no challenges to that report criminal proceedings will be reinstated.” 

On May 4, 2023, Dominguez was arrested as the suspect in the stabbing and murder of David Henry Breaux, a community member affectionately known as “The Compassion Guy” and UC Davis student Karim Abou Najm, as well as the attempted murder of community member Kimberlee Guillory.

“The Yolo County District Attorney has filed two murder charges and one attempted murder charge against 21-year-old Davis resident, Carlos Dominguez,” a press release made on May 5, 2023 from Yolo County District Attorney’s office reads.

The press release made after the arrest states that a Special Circumstance For Multiple Murders was alleged, potentially allowing for a sentence of life without parole and even the death penalty. 

“A Special Circumstance for Multiple Murders has been alleged which makes the case eligible for either Life without the Possibility of Parole, or the death penalty,” the press release reads. “The decision regarding whether to pursue the death penalty will be made at later date.”

Dominguez was a third-year biological sciences major enrolled at UC Davis until April 25, when he was expelled due to academic reasons. Judge McAdam said that the report of Reales Dominguez’s mental health stated he had a schizophrenic and catatonia disorder. 

In August, Dominguez’s public defender argued that he was not competent to stand trial. Dominguez was diagnosed with schizophrenia by three mental health professionals and was ordered to take medication and be placed in the state hospital. 

Dominguez was ultimately ruled as not a risk of harming himself and others in an institutional setting and is now being held in the Yolo County Jail without bail rather than returning to the hospital.

Both Maria Breaux, sister of David Henry Breaux, and Nadine Yehya, mother of Karim Najm, attended the hearing on Friday, according to The Sacramento Bee. Maria Breaux has attended multiple memorials to honor the legacy of her brother. When asked to make a statement, Maria Breaux shared that she is glad Reales Dominguez received mental care.

“I’m glad that Carlos Reales [Dominguez], after living with seemingly untreated schizophrenia for two years, finally got the help he needed,” Maria Breaux said via email. “Nothing that happens from here will bring David back.” 

David Henry Breaux dedicated his life to understanding compassion. At a vigil, Maria Breaux said her brother told her to forgive someone if they ever harmed him. Maria Breaux hopes that the trial can help bring compassion to people living with mental illness. 

“But I hope, at the very least, that this case brings more awareness and compassion to those living with an extreme, untreated mental illness, and the loved ones who support them,” Maria Breaux said.  

 

Written by: Alma Culverwell — city@theaggie.org 

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