East Palo Alto man convicted of murdering girlfriend


A 49-year-old man who stabbed and slashed his girlfriend to death in a jealous rage was convicted of first-degree murder on Thursday by a San Mateo County jury.

Richard Earl Slaughter of East Palo Alto was convicted of killing Philomena Ashford-Anderson, 47, on Aug. 12, 2013, in the Newell Road apartment they shared.

The couple had been living together for seven months when Slaughter became enraged over phone calls Ashford-Anderson received. Police say the jealousy was unfounded, but Slaughter stabbed Ashford-Anderson multiple times and slashed her, finally cutting her throat. Afterward, he downed a bottle of hard liquor and drove off with her gun, which she kept for protection, according to San Mateo County prosecutors.

Slaughter was apprehended by Redwood City police after he veered into two cars and injured the occupant of one vehicle. He was arrested for drunk driving. When booked into San Mateo County Jail, he told deputies what he had done to Ashford-Anderson.

He was charged with murder, an enhancement for using a deadly weapon, violating his parole and committing a felony while on parole, being a felon in possession of a loaded firearm and two DUI counts. His is a three-strikes case.

During his Aug. 4, 2013, felony arraignment, he initially told a judge he wanted to plead guilty, but he changed his plea to not guilty after speaking to a defense attorney at the judge's recommendation.

Slaughter testified during his trial that he killed Ashford-Anderson in self defense after she attacked him. He was the only defense witness in his case, according to the district attorney's office.

The jury took 65 minutes to deliberate his case and returned with convictions on all charges: first-degree murder with a deadly weapon enhancement; felony possession of a firearm by a felon; felony carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle; felony drunk driving causing injury; and felony driving with over .08 percent blood alcohol causing injury. Sentencing is set for Nov. 18.

Slaughter faces an additional trial on Oct. 6 for violating his parole on his prior convictions. He remains in custody without bail.

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3 people like this
Posted by Previous Neighbor
a resident of Woodland Ave. area (East Palo Alto)
on Sep 26, 2014 at 4:20 pm

It may very well be that she "attacked" him...probably in her own self-defense. Those two were always going at it. I know I called police/security more than a few times when she was screaming bloody murder and yelling that he was going to kill her. The problem was that she wouldn't answer the door when police or security showed up to help. They would both remain quite and after law enforcement left, it would start up again. It was a recipe for disaster. Now I have one next door. Same thing. I guess that apartment building is were Equity Residential stores the largest part of their domestically violent people. One night it sounded like the Friday night at the fights. There were at least 8-10 couples pounding it out around the complex. I finally just left so I didn't have to listen to it all. Soooooo very sad. The apartments are almost exclusively studio apartments. Barely enough room for one person and certain disaster for two people. Putting two people in an environment that small and enclosed is just looking for trouble. Now matter what - everyone needs their own space for privacy once in a while....those tiny apartments do allow for that.

Like this comment
Posted by Previous Neighbor
a resident of Woodland Ave. area (East Palo Alto)
on Sep 26, 2014 at 4:23 pm

That last line should read..."those tiny apartments do not allow for that."

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