Mayfair tire slasher gets two years' probation

David Toledo : Happy with decision.
David Toledo : Happy with decision.
Posted: May 14, 2014

David Toledo never admitted being what a Philadelphia jury called him: the Mayfair Tire Slasher.

But Toledo wasn't complaining about the sentence he got Monday from Common Pleas Court Judge Edward C. Wright: two years' probation and restitution totaling $916.37.

"I'm very happy with the outcome," said Toledo, 46, as he walked with his wife, Yvonne, to register at the probation office. Toledo praised lawyers William J. Brennan Jr. and Richard J. Fuschino Jr.

Toledo's former neighbors were not so pleased.

"No lesson was learned here," fumed Milt Martelack, former president of the Mayfair Town Watch, which worked with police from February into April 2012 to find who was slashing the tires of residents in an area bounded by Frankford Avenue and Aldine, Walker, and Teesdale Streets.

Martelack said Toledo - who became the on-camera face of outraged Mayfair on television news reports - terrorized the neighborhood. He called probation "extremely outrageous."

In addition to the dozen residents whose tires were slashed, police estimated they spent more than $400,000 before Toledo was arrested on April 16, 2012, and the slashings stopped.

In a mixed verdict, a jury on Feb. 5 found Toledo guilty of 15 of 60 counts of criminal mischief and related offenses. The verdict caused Brennan to refer to his client as "a Mayfair tire slasher, not the Mayfair Tire Slasher."

Toledo said nothing before he was sentenced. Brennan had argued that his client should get the penalty recommended by state sentencing guidelines: restitution and up to a year in prison.

Brennan said Toledo and his wife have been threatened, harassed, and forced to abandon their house in the 4000 block of Aldine, and sell it for a "bargain-basement speculator's price."

According to city property records, the Toledos bought the house for $82,000 in April 2011 and sold it a month after his arrest for $40,000.

"He can't get a job because employers Google his name and see he's the Mayfair Tire Slasher," Brennan said. "That is a stigma that will stay with him the rest of his life."

Toledo's mother, Dorothy, and his wife asked Wright to be lenient.

"The life of my family has been consumed by materialism - tires," lamented Yvonne Toledo. "No one was murdered, no one was raped, no one was robbed at gunpoint."

"We've all suffered," she said, referring to the community and her family. "All I want is for Mayfair to kind of move on."

Assistant District Attorneys Lauren McHale and Tracie Gaydos argued that Toledo deserved five to 10 years in prison.

The prosecutors played a collection of television news clips showing Toledo criticizing police and demanding the capture of the slasher. In one, Toledo, a butcher, said he wanted to "break the hands" of the slasher so he could never slash again.

They also showed video taken between 2003 and 2005 by one of Toledo's former neighbors. Some scenes showed Toledo egging the neighbor's house, shoveling snow into the neighbor's cleared driveway, and making lewd, obscene gestures toward the neighbor's security camera.

Gaydos said Toledo had engaged in conduct he should have left on the school playground and that he had become addicted to his own "sick sense of being famous and his own sense of glory."

Wright said he "agonized over the correct sentence" and warned Toledo, "You're walking on a tightrope," a reference to what would happen if he violates probation.

"Mr. Brennan, make sure your client understands that," the judge said.


jslobodzian@phillynews.com

215-854-2985 @joeslobo

www.inquirer.com/crimeandpunishment

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