Skateboard murder suspect will face jury trial 

A 23-year-old murder suspect who claimed self-defense in the death of a 60-year-old man in the Upper Haight neighborhood on Christmas will face a jury trial, a San Francisco Superior court judge decided Wednesday.

Dustin “Frank” Tolboe is accused of killing Donald Tanksley with a skateboard, but Tolboe’s attorney argued in preliminary court hearings Tuesday and Wednesday that his client was merely defending himself from Tanksley swinging a metal-tipped cane at his head.

A witness testified on Tuesday that Tolboe jabbed Tanksley in the face once with his skateboard, causing him to fall backward and break his skull. According to witnesses and police interviews, the scuffle began when Tanksley attempted to steal beer from a group of his friends and began swinging his cane at them when they told him to leave.

A toxicologist testified Wednesday that blood results taken from Tanksley two hours after the incident revealed his blood alcohol level was likely above .20, more than twice the legal limit to drive a car.

Police arrested Tolboe the morning after the outdoor Christmas celebration at the corner of Haight Street and Masonic Avenue and he has been in jail since on $1 million bail. Police list Tolboe with an address from Thatcher, Utah, and he was apparently visiting San Francisco for a few weeks.

Tolboe’s arraignment is scheduled for March 30.

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Dan Schreiber

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