Man charged in toddler’s stabbing death at mother’s workplace
A man was charged Thursday in the fatal stabbing of a 3-year-old girl at her parents’ downtown factory job and in a knife attack on another woman months earlier.
Ricardo Augusto Utuy, 34, faces one count each of murder and attempted murder, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. Prosecutors allege that Utuy used a knife during the attacks.
Utuy surrendered to detectives Tuesday, a day after police said he repeatedly stabbed “Baby Ruby” Vasquez without warning at a clothing factory where he and her parents worked.
The attack occurred just after 5 p.m. when Ruby’s parents brought her to work in the 800 block of McGarry Street, prosecutors said.
While at the factory, Ruby went over to her father to give him a cookie, prosecutors said. Her mother, who had stepped away from her workstation, noticed that her daughter was then running toward her with Utuy just steps behind, they said.
That’s when Utuy attacked the girl with a knife, stabbing her “multiple times” before fleeing, according to police.
The mother returned to find her daughter mortally wounded. The girl was taken to an area hospital, where she died.
On Wednesday, police said a second victim came forward after seeing Utuy’s photograph.
According to prosecutors, Utuy stabbed the woman on March 10 at another factory in downtown Los Angeles. Utuy fled after the stabbing, they said.
LAPD Capt. Jorge Rodriguez said Utuy was sometimes seen laughing and talking to himself. He did things that made co-workers think he was “not all there,” the captain said.
The girl’s mother and Utuy had “minimal contact” at the factory, police said.
If Utuy is convicted, he faces life in state prison.
Staff writer Joseph Serna contributed to this report.
For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA on Twitter.
12:01 p.m.: This article has been updated with charges being filed against Ricardo Augusto Utuy
11:35 a.m.: This article was updated with additional details.
This article was originally published at 10:15 a.m.
The perils of parenting through a pandemic
What’s going on with school? What do kids need? Get 8 to 3, a newsletter dedicated to the questions that keep California families up at night.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.