Santa Clara County Superior Court

Dane Cleeton was charged today with murder and attempted murder in relation to a June 21 stabbing that left his mother dead and his father severely injured, according to authorities.

Cleeton, 25, appeared June 24 at the San Jose Hall of Justice for his first court appearance since Morgan Hill Police arrested him at the home where he lived with his parents on Rustling Oak Court.

At the arraignment hearing, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office formally charged Cleeton with murder and attempted murder. The written felony complaint states that Cleeton “personally used a deadly and dangerous weapon, a knife,” when he allegedly attacked his parents June 21.

A “statement of facts” filed with the complaint says that when officers arrived at the home on Rustling Oak Court in response to a report of a stabbing, they located a “deceased female, in blood-soaked clothing” lying by the front entrance.

Dane Cleeton

Another victim had been “stabbed in the arm, neck and wrist,” says the statement written by MHPD Det. Christopher Woodrow.

Officers determined the woman was Cleeton’s mother. The Santa Clara County Coroner’s Office identified her as 57-year-old Leilani Guerrero-Cleeton.

Dane Cleeton had also stabbed his father, according to police. MHPD Sgt. Bill Norman said June 24 that the man was still in the hospital, in stable condition.

Woodrow’s statement of facts also describes the suspect as being covered in blood. Officers detained Cleeton about 50 feet away from his mother shortly after they arrived. Cleeton had suffered injuries to his hands, and was treated at a nearby hospital before he was booked at the jail.

Also at the scene June 21, officers located Cleeton’s father in a neighbor’s garage, suffering from multiple stab wounds, according to police. He was airlifted to San Jose Regional Medical Center.

Detectives interviewed Cleeton’s father on June 22, according to the statement of facts. The father identified his son as the sole attacker. The father “saw his son…attack his wife and tried to intervene when he was stabbed multiple times,” reads Woodrow’s statement.

Officers reviewed security camera footage from a neighbor’s residence, police said. The footage showed Cleeton’s father running from his son, to the neighbor’s house. Dane Cleeton could be seen in the footage holding a knife in his hand.

At the June 24 hearing, the judge appointed the county public defender’s office to represent Cleeton. He is next scheduled to appear in court, for a plea hearing, on July 29 at the San Jose Hall of Justice.

Rustling Oak Court is located in east Morgan Hill. Two neighbors who have lived on the street for about 30 years said June 22 that the stabbing incident was the first time they had seen police in the neighborhood.

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Michael Moore is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor for the Morgan Hill Times, Hollister Free Lance and Gilroy Dispatch since 2008. During that time, he has covered crime, breaking news, local government, education, entertainment and more.


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