On Friday, May 23rd, 2014 at 4:28 a.m. a concerned citizen called the Pinal County Sheriff’s Communication Center 9-1-1 to report they saw a man walking on North Geronimo Road, between East Superstition Boulevard and East Forest Street, outside the city limits of Apache Junction, and it appeared the man had bloodon his torso. When the concerned citizen turned around to check on the man, he was gone.
Pinal County Sheriff’s Deputies arrived in the area and began searching for the man. At 4:49 a.m. the male victim, age 21, from Mesa was located lying on the ground at a residence in the 1000 block of North Geronimo Road. Deputies noticed the man was covered in blood and sustained multiple stab wounds.
The victim was given immediate medical attention and was taken by medical helicopter to a Phoenix area hospital. It was there deputies learned he sustained eight stab wounds and multiple lacerations to his upper body.
Deputies on scene followed a blood trail from where the victim was found, southbound through the desert area to where the man was assaulted at a residence in the 5000 block of East Cody Street.
After witnesses were located and interviewed they revealed Daniel Sepulveda, age 23, from Apache Junction, and the victim did not know each other. They both attended a party at a residence in the 5000 block of East Cody Street. The victim was reported to be extremely intoxicated and passed out in the yard. Daniel Sepulveda and a witness approached the victim and attempted wake him up. The witness walked back inside the party, leaving Daniel alone with the victim. Other witnesses later saw Daniel and the victim in a physical altercation. One witness then saw Daniel stabbing the victim.
During the assault a separate witness heard Daniel tell the victim “Pull out your shank” and she heard the victim say “I don’t have one”.
After the Assault, Daniel fled the scene and the victim disappeared on foot. He was later observed walking on North Geronimo Road when the concerned citizen called the Sheriff’s Office.
The victim reported due to his level of intoxication at the time of the assault he did not remember what had occurred or even knowing Daniel.
On June 5th Daniel was located, arrested and refused to be interviewed by detectives. He was booked into the Pinal County Jail and charged with seventeen counts of Aggravated Assault.
On June 6th he was indicted on one count of Aggravated Assault and remains in custody in the Pinal County Jail.
Sheriff Paul Babeu stated, “The victim in this case is lucky to be alive. Due to his level of intoxication he was not able to defend himself against this unprovoked attack. Daniel Sepulveda was arrested and indicted on aggravated assault charges but could have very easily been facing murder charges had the victim died. He now sits in a Pinal County Jail cell.”