Mayfair Tire Slasher case goes to the jury

Accused tire vandal David Toledo at his Mayfair home. (Richard Kauffman / Staff Photographer)
Accused tire vandal David Toledo at his Mayfair home. (Richard Kauffman / Staff Photographer)
Posted: February 04, 2014

David Toledo, the man on trial for allegedly slashing the car tires of nearly 50 of his neighbors in 2012, did it because he wanted attention and fame, a prosecutor said Monday.

"While this defendant was seeking a thrill, these people were being terrorized just so he could have his 15 minutes of fame," Assistant District Attorney Tracie Gaydos told the jury in her closing argument.

Toledo, 46, held himself out as a community activist trying to catch the vandal - dubbed the "Mayfair Tire Slasher" by the media - before police arrested him for the crimes.

The tire slashings took place in roughly a four-block area of Mayfair between Jan. 13 and April 16, 2012 - the day of Toledo's arrest.

His defense lawyer, William Brennan, told the jury another community activist who was not charged - Anthony Hainsworth - is more likely the culprit, and that the prosecution had failed to prove its case against Toledo.

He said no witnesses or physical evidence linked Toledo to the crimes. In addition, he noted that it was Hainsworth - always with a folding knife in his pocket - who patrolled the streets of Mayfair every night of the slashings, while Toledo only patrolled a few times.

"This case came down to a rush to judgment. This case came down to an awful lot of slashings hung on David Toledo, and you have to ask yourself, 'Has the Commonwealth proven its case?'" Brennan said.

But Gaydos countered that Toledo always somehow showed up after tires were slashed to tell neighbors they had been victimized, even before they knew. She said police also spotted him near two tires that had been recently slashed - one was hissing air, the other was on Toledo's own car.

Toledo, driven by the attention, took to calling the police and the press to report slashings so that he could be front and center in the hunt, the prosecutor said.

"Everything in this case is about David Toledo. When you look at all of the evidence, when you put all the pieces of the puzzle together, you're left with one face - David Toledo," she said.

The defendant, a high-school dropout who worked as a butcher at the time of his arrest, told Common Pleas Judge Edward C. Wright that he did not wish to testify.

The jury began deliberating Monday afternoon and will resume Tuesday morning.


" @MensahDean

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