The court assigned him to the private defender program, and the private defender expressed doubt as to his mental competence to stand trial, so the judge suspended the proceedings so that two doctors could be appointed to interview and evaluate his mental competence. Those doctors are expected to be appointed this week.
On June 7 at around 10:30 p.m., Vasquez Lopez was in a parked car at Nealon Park when he got into a verbal altercation with a resident, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office. Vasquez Lopez reportedly threw beer bottles at a group having a barbecue nearby.
Two people approached Vasquez Lopez and told him that the police had been called, according to the DA's Office. Just before police arrived, Vasquez Lopez started to drive away and appeared to intentionally strike a woman who had been filming the altercation. The other person had to run away to avoid being hit by the vehicle, according to the DA's Office.
The woman sustained serious but non-life-threatening injuries to her head, hip and leg, according to the Menlo Park Police Department and the DA's Office.
As he fled the scene, Vasquez Lopez rammed into a Menlo Park police car, immobilizing his vehicle, police said.
Vasquez Lopez was then taken into custody, and police determined that he had been driving a stolen vehicle. They also suspected that he had been driving under the influence of alcohol.
No police officers were injured during the incident.
Vasquez Lopez faces nine felony charges — some with enhancements — related to attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and assault upon a peace officer, driving under the influence, attempting to avoid police capture, leaving the scene, and driving a stolen car. He remains in custody on $10 million bail.
People with more information about the incident can contact the Menlo Park Police Department at 650-330-6300.
No-contest plea in stabbing case
A man who repeatedly tried to stab another man he woke up, yelled at, and then accused of being the killer of his brother in a Menlo Park homeless encampment last August pleaded no contest on June 11 to a felony charge of assault with a deadly weapon.
Roberto Gonzalez, whose nickname is "Indio," is a 28-year-old Menlo Park resident who used two knives to try to stab the victim on Aug. 20, 2018, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office. The victim was asleep in an encampment when the assault occurred.
Someone tried to intervene, but fled when he saw Gonzalez's two knives. Another person helped the victim get away, and they reported the incident.
The victim was treated at Stanford Hospital and was expected to recover, according to the DA's Office.
Gonzalez made the no-contest plea on the condition that he will serve no more than two years in prison; his sentencing is scheduled for July 18, according to District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.
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