General Crime

Matthew Wester pleaded not guilty of killing his father Richard Wester

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A 22-year-old man accused of killing his father earlier this month pleaded not guilty to murder and assault charges in a Martinez courtroom this afternoon. Matthew Wester entered the not guilty pleas in Contra Costa County Superior Court to charges of murder and assault by force likely to cause great bodily injury for allegedly killing his father, Richard Wester, 61, at the father’s home near Clayton on March 8.

Wester is scheduled to return to court on April 16 to set future court dates. Sheriff’s deputies were called to Richard Wester’s home in the 400 block of Meadow View Lane around 11 a.m. on March 8, where they found him unconscious and not breathing, according to sheriff’s spokesman Jimmy Lee. Autopsy results released last week show the 61-year-old died from chest injuries, and that there was blood in his chest from multiple rib fractures.

An investigation soon led detectives to Matthew Wester, who was arrested on suspicion of murder. He was taken to county jail, where he remains on $1.08 million bail. Court documents show that Richard Wester filed a restraining order against his son in 2010. In the restraining order, Wester described an incident in March 2010 in which his son became angry when told he could not live at his father’s house.

In the documents, Wester said his son “spit in my face, punched and kicked me, destroyed furniture, waved a knife, stole from me and broke into my house.” He noted that his son suffers from Asperger’s syndrome and was living in a group home and described him as having anger problems and being “prone to rage.” Wester wrote in the restraining order that his son’s violent outbursts had been increasing in both frequency and intensity.

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