Trial Continued for Suspect Accused in 1984 Murder of Tina Faelz

Steven J. Carlson was scheduled to be in court this morning

Steven J. Carlson Patch photo archive
Steven J. Carlson Patch photo archive
Update as of 5 p.m.—

Officials at the Alameda County District Attorney's office say the trial for Steven J. Carlson has been continued to Feb. 13.

Original story—

The man accused in the killing of a Pleasanton teen in 1984 appeared at the Rene C. Davidson Courthouse in Oakland today for the first day of his trial, according to court records.

Teresa Drenick of the Alameda County District Attorney's office said Carlson's trial had been scheduled to start in Dec. but was continued.

[Related article: Trial Begins for Suspect Accused in the Murder of Tina Faelz]

Steven J. Carlson, 45, was arrested in August of 2011 in the killing of Foothill High student, Tina Faelz, who was 14 when she was stabbed 44 times while walking home from school in Pleasanton. Carlson, a registered sex offender with a criminal history involving drugs and battery, was arrested after police were tipped off by an FBI analysis of evidence collected at the scene of in 1984.

[Related article: Trial Date Set in Killing of Foothill High Student Tina Faelz]

Police tracked Carlson down thanks to new DNA technology that wasn't available at the time of the killing. They were able to identify blood on a purse found hanging from a tree at the killing scene as being from Carlson.

On April 5, 1984, Tina Faelz, a 14-year-old Foothill High freshman, was stabbed to death in a culvert that once crossed beneath Interstate 680, while she was walking home from school. Fellow students discovered her body shortly afterward. Now, 27 years later, Carlson has been charged in the killing.

Pleasanton Police said Carlson lived close to the path on which Faelz was killed, a popular shortcut that passed east of the school underneath the freeway to the Valley Trails neighborhood. He said it would have been easy for the suspect to know which students used that route to walk home. (For a map showing the school area, click here.)

Carlson, 45, is being held without bail at Santa Rita jail. 

Supporters of Faelz have been keeping track of the case on this Facebook Page.

Past Pleasanton Patch coverage of Tina Faelz murder case:

Contributor Susan Schena, Patch editors Kari Hulac and Tanya Rose contributed to this report.


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