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Local Man Convicted Of Second-Degree Murder

A Mexican national who fatally stabbed a transient he was feuding with in San Marcos was convicted today of second-degree murder.

Saul Hernandez-Echeverria was convicted of killing Ramon Garcia, whose body was discovered Feb. 17, 2009, in a shed in the backyard of a home on Ponte Avenue, Deputy District Attorney Lisa Stark said.

Hernandez-Echeverria, 38, faces 16 years to life in prison when he is sentenced Jan. 14 by Judge Joan Weber.

Stark said the defendant admitted to investigators that he was feuding with the 50-year-old Garcia, and came up from behind and stabbed him once.

The knife wound penetrated two layers of clothing and went six inches into Garcia's body, penetrating two vital organs and breaking a rib, the prosecutor said.

The defendant later called and asked his sister to check on Garcia's condition, and he then fled to Mexico, she said.

Hernandez-Echeverria was arrested about two months after the murder near Campo when he tried to sneak back into the United States with a group of illegal immigrants.

At the time of the slaying, the defendant lived in the metal outbuilding at a house owned by some of his relatives, and the victim sometimes spent the night.

Authorities said the two were seen together the night of the murder.

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