Judge to Sentence David Ditto, Accused of Killing Wife

Mira Mesa man said his wife died injuries from a fall down the stairs

By Michelle Wayland, Rory Devine and Lauren Steussy
|  Monday, Oct 24, 2011  |  Updated 10:12 PM PDT
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A husband who claimed his wife's death was a household accident will be going to prison for a long time.

A husband who claimed his wife's death was a household accident will be going to prison for a long time.

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Verdict in David Ditto Trial: Raw Video

A Mira Mesa man who said his wife was critically injured in a fall down a flight of stairs was convicted today of first-degree murder in her beating and strangulation death.

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A Mira Mesa man has been convicted of killing his wife.

David Ditto, 43, called police March 12 saying his wife was hurt after a fall down the stairs at the couple's home in the 7700 block of Canyon Point Lane.

Two days later, Karina Ditto, 38, died from her injuries. The medical examiner conducted an autopsy and declared the death a homicide.

When the verdict was read inside a downtown courtoom Monday morning, City News Service reporter Kelly Wheeler reported that members of Ditto's family gasped, shook and cried.

"Sons of bitches," Ditto's stepfather said from the back row of a crowded courtroom according to Wheeler.

In his March 22 arraignment, Ditto began to shake and cry as the prosecutor read off a list of “significant” and “extensive” injuries.

Deputy District Attorney Claudine Ruiz said the victim suffered from a lot of bruising, which she said would indicate murder, and there was clear evidence of strangulation.

At the arraignment, the judge issued a restraining order barring Ditto from access to his children, aged 10 and 14.

Jurors returned Monday morning with the guilty verdict. Ditto faces 25 years in prison when he is sentenced in Jan. 3, 2012.

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