MURRIETA (CNS) – A convicted felon accused of fatally stabbing a 32-year-old trucker parked alongside Interstate 15 in Lake Elsinore must stand trial for murder, a judge ruled on Friday.
Vanessa Michelle Ruvalcaba, 24, of Riverside was arrested in April 2019 after allegedly killing Hosbaldo Davila Jr. of San Bernardino.
After a preliminary hearing, Riverside County Superior Court Judge Mark Mandio found there was sufficient evidence to warrant a trial on the murder count, as well as a sentence-enhancing weapon allegation for use of a knife.
The judge scheduled a post-preliminary hearing arraignment for July 10 at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta and left Ruvalcaba’s bail set at $1 million. She is being held at the Robert Presley Jail in Riverside.
According to the California Highway Patrol, the alleged attack happened about 7 a.m. on April 20, 2019, along the shoulder of southbound I-15 near Main Street.
Ruvalcaba was in the cab of the truck, which did not have a trailer attached when she stabbed the victim, Officer Mike Lassig alleged.
He said that witnesses saw the defendant running away from the rig and became suspicious that she had committed a crime, prompting several calls to 911.
CHP officers and Riverside County sheriff’s deputies arrived within a couple of minutes and detained her not far from the truck, according to Lassig.
Davila was found inside the vehicle, unconscious and severely wounded. Paramedics pronounced him dead a few minutes later.
A motive for the attack was not disclosed, and it was unclear whether the victim and defendant knew each other.
According to court records, Ruvalcaba has a prior conviction for burglary, resulting in a three-year sentence of probation.