Man accused of San Carlos samurai sword beheading will stand trial


(KRON) — A San Carlos woman’s accused killer will stand trial for murder.

Jose “Rafa” Solano Landaeta, 33, of Hayward, is accused of beheading his ex-girlfriend with a samurai sword in front of multiple witnesses on September 8, 2022. The victim, 27-year-old Karina Castro, was a mother of two daughters. Landaeta was the father of her youngest daughter.

On Tuesday, a San Mateo County judge received reports from two doctors who determined that Landaeta was sane when he allegedly killed Castro. The murder trial is scheduled to begin on October 27.

Landaeta has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

On the day of the homicide, Castro’s young daughters were inside her apartment when Landaeta confronted his ex-girlfriend outside on Laurel Street, investigators said. A heated argument escalated until he slashed Castro several times with a sword, according to prosecutors.

Jose Landaeta is accused of beheading Karina Castro with a sword in San Carlos. (Pool image)

Landaeta remains in a Redwood City jail with no bail, inmate records show. He will return to court on September 12 for a pretrial conference.


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