The California Supreme Court refused Wednesday to review the case against a man convicted of slitting his girlfriend’s throat in her Beverly Hills apartment, where she survived long enough to write his initials in her own blood.
James Duane Grzeslo was convicted in August 2016 of first-degree murder for the Oct. 26, 2011, killing of Cathy Carrasco-Zanini.
Jurors also found true an allegation that he used a knife during the commission of the crime.
While the 58-year-old woman was dying, she crawled down a hallway and wrote the defendant’s initials — JG — in her own blood, Deputy District Attorney Keri Modder said after the verdict.
Authorities were summoned to the woman’s apartment in the 100 block of North Hamilton Drive after Grzeslo told a therapist he was having nightmares that he had killed his girlfriend, the prosecutor said. Authorities found Carrasco-Zanini with her throat slit.
The couple had been having problems and were going to therapy together, according to the prosecutor.
Grzeslo was sentenced in September 2016 to 26 years to life in state prison.
In a ruling in March, a three-justice panel from California’s 2nd District Court of Appeal rejected the defense’s contention that the trial court erred in failing to hold a hearing to determine if Grzeslo was competent to act as his own attorney and in admitting statements he made to co-workers about slitting the throats of enemy soldiers in Vietnam, where he had never actually served.
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