FAIRFIELD — Three Fairfield teenagers were ordered Tuesday to stand trial on felony charges for their alleged roles in a September gang-related street fight.
Jesus A. Mandujano, 17, Erick Salazar-Espino, 17, and Rosas Estefania, 18, were among a large group partying and drinking heavily at a Fillmore Street home on the night of Sept. 7, 2012.
A smaller group gathered at a nearby apartment complex took offense at the boisterous group, according to police and victim testimony at the trio’s probable cause hearing. Around 10:45 p.m., a bottle was thrown and then another, gang-related shouts and taunts were exchanged and a short time later the two groups converged into a street fight.
In less than two minutes, the fighting ended and three men had been stabbed. An 18-year-old was stabbed twice in the back, a 22-year-old had cuts to his hands and a 22-year-old man was stabbed in the groin. All three men were taken to the hospital where they were treated for stab wounds.
By the time police arrived at Fillmore Street, most of the participants in the bloody brawl had fled.
Fairfield police gang detectives investigated the street fight and a week later arrested the trio and others for their suspected roles in the fight.
Mandujano and Salazar-Espino were both ordered to stand trial on six felony assault with a deadly weapon charges.
Estefania was ordered to stand trial on charges of provoking a fight. The charge would typically be a misdemeanor but Judge Donna Stashyn ruled the provocation was gang-related, which bumps the allegation up to a felony.
All three suspects, who are each being prosecuted as adults, were ordered back to court March 28 to be arraigned.
Another fighter, 14-year-old Addison Espinoza, was previously found guilty of stabbing two of the victims.
When juveniles are charged with certain serious crimes, their names are posted at the courthouse and their hearings are open to the public.
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