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Santa Rosa killer clings to life after San Quentin suicide attempt

  • Honorio Pantaleon

A former Santa Rosa man convicted of stabbing the mother of his children 68 times and stuffing her body in a toy box was found hanging in his prison cell in an apparent suicide attempt, a state prison spokeswoman said Tuesday.

He is not expected to survive.

Honorio Pantaleon, 33, who arrived at San Quentin State Prison March 10 to begin a sentence of life without parole, was found Monday afternoon during a routine security check, said Terry Thornton of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Pantaleon was hanging by a state-issued bed sheet tied to a locker and had apparently cut his own throat, Thornton said.

He was transported in critical condition to an undisclosed hospital outside the prison and was not expected to live, she said.

“We don’t know how he cut his throat,” Thornton said. “Inmates are permitted to have razors. I can’t say if that’s what he used or not. Of course it’s being investigated.”

Pantaleon was convicted of the Mother’s Day 2008 slaying of Patricia Barrales, 25 in the Rincon Valley apartment they shared with their two children, who at the time were ages 2 and 4.

Prosecutors said Pantaleon fought with Barrales over her plans to leave him, attacking her with several knives. He stashed her body in a 30-gallon plastic tub and fled with his children to a relative’s home in Mendocino County. He was arrested in Ukiah after he threatened to kill his mother-in-law.

An autopsy revealed Barrales had been stabbed dozens of times. She was found with an eight-inch knife buried in her eye, prosecutor Tashawn Sanders said at trial.

After 17 days of testimony, jurors in December found him guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder, torture and false imprisonment. In separate deliberations, jurors ruled Pantaleon was sane at the time of the killing.

In February, Judge Ken Gnoss sentenced him to two consecutive life terms and an additional 16 years for using deadly weapons and endangering his children.

He was alone in a cell at the processing center at San Quentin when the suicide attempt occurred, Thornton said.

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