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Man accused in fatal stabbing previously convicted in Ontario killing

By in Press Enterprise on October 31, 2017

By City News Service

A Thousand Palms man charged with allegedly stabbing a man to death in Desert Hot Springs was previously imprisoned for manslaughter in connection with the 2011 slaying of an Ontario resident during a carjacking outside the victim’s home.

Joseph Arrez, 37, is charged with the fatal stabbing of 37-year-old Edwin Carreto, whose body was found at 10:35 p.m. Oct. 21 at a home in the 66500 block of Fourth Street. Arrez was taken into custody the following day. Police say the stabbing occurred after the two men allegedly got into “a verbal altercation.”

Arrez, a parolee, also previously spent time in prison in connection with the Easter Sunday 2011 killing of Gregory Johnson, 59, who was shot inside his SUV, then dumped in an alley. Johnson’s SUV was found abandoned less than four miles from where police found his body.

Arrez pleaded guilty in the case in 2014 and was sentenced to six years and eight months in prison, according to San Bernardino County District Attorney’s spokesman Christopher Lee. It was unclear when Arrez was released from prison and what his exact role was in Johnson’s slaying.

His co-defendant in the Ontario case, Jon Flores, was convicted of murder, carjacking and other allegations by a jury last year and sentenced to 143 years to life. Flores was released from prison on the day of Johnson’s death.

Arrez pleaded not guilty last week to all charges in Carreto’s killing and will return to the Larson Justice Center in Indio on Nov. 3 for a felony settlement conference.

He’s being held at the Larry D. Smith Correctional Facility in Banning on $1.6 million bail.

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