MTS trolley
An MTS trolley in downtown San Diego. Courtesy MTS

A 27-year-old man accused of fatally stabbing another man on a downtown San Diego trolley platform late last month pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a voluntary manslaughter charge.

Bobby Graciano,  who is accused in the stabbing death of 25-year-old Juan Carlos Gonzalez, is being held without bail.

Police received a report of the stabbing about 8:15 p.m. Feb. 27 at the Imperial Trolley Center, 1255 Imperial Ave., and along with transit authorities found Gonzalez suffering from several stab wounds, said San Diego police Lt. Andra Brown.

Paramedics rushed Gonzalez to an area hospital, where he was pronounced dead just before 9:30 p.m., Brown said.

The investigation revealed that Gonzalez was in a fight with another man on the trolley platform and during the fight, the suspect pulled out a knife and stabbed the victim, the lieutenant said.

Deputy District Attorney Kristie Nikoletich said the victim was stabbed four times, including once in the heart.

A motive for the fight or stabbing has not been disclosed, but the prosecutor said the two men knew one another and alleged that Graciano waited for the victim to arrive at the station, at which point they got into a fistfight.

After the stabbing, the men “separated and walked in different directions,” Brown said. “The victim did not initially disclose that he was injured, but moments later, an MTS (Metropolitan Transit System) officer noticed he was bleeding and began first aid. Upon realizing the victim was injured, MTS officers began chasing the suspect on foot.”

Updated at 2:56 p.m. March 9, 2021