Victim Was Stabbed By His Cousin
Watsonville Police arrested 33-year-old Serafin Bernabe Jr. after an investigation revealed that he stabbed his cousin after an argument got out of control. On Sunday night at 10:56 pm, Watsonville Police were called to Union Road and Grant Street on a report of a stabbing victim. Upon the officers’ arrival, they found the 28-year-old man suffering stab wounds to his torso and his hand.
Watsonville Police were able to get a statement from the victim before he went to the hospital. According to him, his cousin at 404 East Riverside Drive stabbed him.
While the victim was in transit to a trauma center police went to the Riverside address just a few blocks away, and found the suspect hiding in the bathroom of the residence. He was arrested without incident.
Officers interviewed witnesses and searched the house, finding some evidence linking Bernabe to the crime, along with blood at the scene. Police found that he was on active probation, so they conducted a probation search at his residence.
Police confiscated a .22 caliber rifle that was in Bernabe’s bedroom. He is forbidden from owning a firearm while on probation. He was arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, illegal possession of a firearm and a probation violation. He was transported to the Santa Cruz County Jail.
Bernabe’s arrest records show a troubled, often violent history. Records from June of 2005 show an arrest for battery, burglary, possessing stolen property and a narcotic controlled substance. A year later, in May of 2006, he was charged again with burglary and battery, along with resisting arrest, and evasion with wanton disregard for public safety. In November he was again charged with the same offenses, and in December with being under the influence of drugs, and a probation violation. A year later, in October of 2007, he was arrested for burglary, conspiracy and probation violations.
After a break of a few years, when he may have been serving time, he was arrested in March of 2012 for loitering or prowling, and felony probation violations. In September he was charged with being under the influence. By April of 2013, he was back to his violent ways, when he was arrested under domestic violence charges for inflicting corporal injury on a spouse or co-habitant, along with assault with force likely to cause great bodily injury, and a felony probation violation. In February of this year he was charged with violating his post release supervision terms.
Watsonville Police investigators have been assisting with this investigation and have been gathering more evidence and witness statements in an effort to clarify what led up to the stabbing. If convicted, with his history, he will likely serve a much longer sentence than he has before, no doubt to the relief of his many victims.
CrimeVoice staff contributed to this report