SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man who stabbed another man more than 20 times in downtown San Diego earlier this year, leaving the victim hospitalized with life- threatening injuries, was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in state prison.
Pierce Tostada, 20, pleaded guilty last month to an attempted murder count and a great bodily injury allegation for repeatedly stabbing Jordan Hardgrow in the chest and abdomen, puncturing his heart and lungs.
The attack happened at about 1:30 a.m. Jan. 16 in the 800 block of 11th Avenue.
At Tostada's arraignment, Deputy District Attorney Hailey Williams said witnesses reported the defendant following Hardgrow and "verbally harassing him," prompting him to turn around and ask the defendant if he wanted to fight.
A fistfight ensued, during which Tostada pulled out a knife and stabbed Hardgrow five times, according to Williams.
The victim collapsed to the ground, and Williams said Tostada then knelt down and continued stabbing him. A bystander briefly pulled Tostada away from the victim, but the defendant returned and stabbed Hardgrow several more times, the prosecutor said.
At Tostada's sentencing hearing in a San Diego courtroom, Hardgrow said he flatlined for about 10 minutes while in the hospital and underwent 26 surgeries as a result of the stabbing.
Several members of Hardgrow's family, who flew from Ohio to attend the sentencing, described their despair on the day of the attack when Hardgrow went missing after a date, with no clue as to his whereabouts until they received word later that day that he was in an intensive care unit.
A motive for the attack has not been disclosed, and many of Hardgrow's family members said they still do not understand why it occurred.
San Diego Superior Court Judge Daniel Link asked that photographs of Hardgrow's injuries be shown to the defendant before the stipulated 10-year sentence was imposed, which Link described as "one year for every minute that he flatlined."