Suspect in Local Jogger Attack Due Back in Court Next Week
• Man Has Been Ordered to Stand Trial
BY ANNE SOBLE
BY ANNE SOBLE
Christian Marcus Verdin was ordered to stand trial last Thursday on charges that he attacked a a local resident last month on the Point Dume headlands and stole her SUV after the woman jumped/slid down a 150-foot cliff in her struggle to escape.
Verdin was arrested in San Bernardino on April 2 by sheriff’s detectives after a DNA sample obtained from scratch scrapings collected from the victim identified him as the alleged assailant.
Verdin’s DNA is in the state database because he was sentenced to three years in state prison in 2002 following a conviction of petty theft with priors, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office.
Verdin, who has pleaded not guilty, was in Van Nuys Superior Court for a preliminary hearing on April 15. He is slated to be arraigned on April 29.
Verdin is charged with assault with intent to commit a felony, second-degree robbery, assault with a deadly weapon and grand theft auto. He remains in custody on $320,000 bail.
The man is suspected of attacking the 45-year-old jogger during the day on March 12, as she paused after a run at Point Dume State Park. He allegedly was carrying a knife when he approached the woman but no weapon has been found, according to the incident report.
When the woman broke away, Verdin, who reportedly was barefoot, then allegedly drove off in the victim’s 2004 Toyota Land Cruiser, which was found after his arrest.
The first sheriff’s department news alert that was issued for the missing vehicle contained an incorrect tag number, which might have contributed to the delay in finding it.