MURRIETA – A Wildomar man who shot at his neighbor during a dispute and later stabbed the victim multiple times in a roadside confrontation was convicted today of attempted murder and other charges.
A Murrieta jury deliberated three days before finding 56-year-old Richard Terry Mount guilty of two separate attacks on Balvinder Dhaliwal, as well as threatening law enforcement officers with a rifle.
Riverside County Superior Court Judge Michael Rushton scheduled a sentencing hearing for Sept. 8. Mount is facing more than 25 years in prison.
According to prosecutors, trouble began when Mount became romantically involved with Dhaliwal’s wife, Laura, in the fall of 2012.
Dhaliwal returned home on Dec. 4, 2012, to find his teenage son alone, even though the youth was under a juvenile court order to be under parental supervision during the overnight hours, according to a trial brief filed by Deputy District Attorney Sean Oswill.
Oswill said Dhaliwal realized his wife was with Mount at the defendant’s Cottonwood Canyon Road home, which Dhaliwal tried calling several times, eliciting only a few unintelligible grunts from Mount over the telephone.
Dhaliwal had to be at work by 2:30 a.m. and did not want to leave his son at the house unsupervised, so he drove the boy to Mount’s residence, where he honked his pickup truck’s horn repeatedly to get his wife’s attention, according to Oswill.
Mount walked onto his front porch and fired three AK-47 rounds, which landed ”within just a few feet of the driver’s side door of the victim’s truck,” Oswill wrote.
Deputies arrived moments later and set up a perimeter, directing Mount to come out of his house and surrender.
After a nearly hourlong standoff, Mount walked onto his back porch and raised his rifle in the direction of two deputies, both of whom opened fire, striking him in the legs and hand, according to the prosecution.
Mount was treated for non-life-threatening wounds and jailed but posted bond a week later. As a condition of his release, Mount promised not to have contact with Dhaliwal. However, according to Oswill, on June 21, 2013, the defendant and victim met each other coming in opposite directions on Cottonwood Canyon.
Oswill alleged that Mount pulled directly in Dhaliwal’s path, forcing the victim to slam on his brakes. The two men got out of their vehicles and an argument ensued.
”The defendant pulled out a knife and stabbed Dhaliwal nine times in the arm, chest, abdomen and head,” the trial brief stated.
Mount fled the scene, leaving the victim bleeding and barely conscious. He surrendered to law enforcement the following day.
Along with the attempted murder count, Mount was convicted of assault with a machine gun, shooting at an occupied vehicle, exhibiting a firearm at law enforcement officers, possession of an assault rifle and sentence-enhancing allegations of committing a crime while on bail and inflicting great bodily injury. Jurors acquitted him of a second attempted murder charge.