Suspect sentenced for stabbing man to death during attempted robbery in Orange County

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

A man faces up to life in prison after stabbing a pedestrian to death during a robbery in Tustin.

Miguel Angel Orellana, 23, of Anaheim was sentenced Friday from 25 years to life in state prison for the murder of David Nakaki, 62, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

On Dec. 9, 2019, Nakaki was walking around his neighborhood near the intersection of Prospect Avenue and Norwood Park Place after returning home from work at around 8:45 p.m.

Orellana, who was a passenger inside a car being driven by his girlfriend, spotted the victim and got out of his vehicle. He approached Nakaki and demanded money from him.

When the victim said he didn’t have any money on him, Orellana stabbed him before getting back into his car and speeding away, officials said.

Tustin police responded to the scene and found Nakaki suffering from a single stab wound. He was transported to a local hospital where he died from his injuries.

After several weeks of investigation, Orellana and his girlfriend, Erika Pineda, 25, were arrested as suspects.

Miguel Angel Orellana, 23, and Erika Pineda, 25, in booking photos from the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

Orellana pleaded guilty to one felony count of first-degree murder and admitted the special allegation that he used a knife during the commission of the crime, according to the DA’s office.

Pineda who was driving the vehicle at the time of the murder was charged with one felony count of conspiracy to commit a robbery and one felony count of accessory after the fact.

She faces a possible maximum sentence of five years and eight months in prison and is scheduled for a pretrial hearing on April 19.

“A man who was simply out for a nighttime walk in his own neighborhood was callously murdered when he said he left his wallet at home,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “This is as cold-hearted and ruthless as a homicide case can be. Instead of walking away, this defendant decided to take someone’s life and leave a family with a lifetime of grief and mourning because of a reckless act.”

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.