A man on probation is accused of causing $5000 damage to a truck sitting on an Escondido car lot two months ago. At a court hearing on April 7, defendant David Gordon Huntley heard evidence of felony vandalism presented against him.
A mechanic at Fresh Start Motors said he encountered Huntley as soon as he arrived to work, at the business located near the corner of Center City Parkway and El North Parkway, at about 9 a.m. on January 29.
Huntley frequently “hung around” the car lot, the mechanic testified, but on this day Huntley displayed “erratic behavior” and “threatened to burn the place down.” The defendant is described in sheriff’s records as 53 years old, 6 feet 2 inches tall, and 225 pounds. The mechanic said he phoned Escondido police, whose headquarters is located just down the street.
Escondido police officer Joe Creed stated that police witnessed Huntley using a key to scratch the paint on a GMC pickup truck on the lot. Creed said there was damage to paint all over the truck, and a ten-inch swastika was carved into one side.
The damaged vehicle was a four-door, crew-cab truck, raised, and customized with huge tires and silver leaf in the pin-striping; it was reportedly valued at $50,000.
Huntley chose to act as his own attorney in San Diego’s North County Superior Court. He told the judge that he was considering a plea of temporary insanity, and he handed the court a time-line he created, describing the day of the alleged incident. Huntley explained to the judge, “It’s kind of a non-linear thing.”
Huntley also stated: “My mental illness is also factual” and “I do consider myself certifiable” and “There is a delusionary component.”
Judge Harry Elias advised Huntley that if he wanted to declare himself not guilty by reason of insanity, he could do that at his next court hearing on April 21, and the judge could order him examined by a doctor.
Judge Elias ordered Huntley to answer the new felony vandalism charge, and found him in violation of probation regarding a prior offense, a separate misdemeanor trespassing matter was continued.