Tahoe Man faces charges following police standoff
April 11, 2009
There is enough evidence to hold a 57-year-old South Lake Tahoe man in connection with an October incident that ended in a police standoff, El Dorado County Superior Court Judge Suzanne Kingsbury ruled on Friday.
Police arrested Kenneth Prehoda on the morning of Oct. 12 after he allegedly fired a shotgun into the ceiling of his Trout Creek Avenue home and assaulted his in-laws the night before.
Kingsbury made the decision during a preliminary hearing at the South Lake Tahoe courthouse Friday afternoon.
During the hearing, Prehoda’s wife, Porsche Kent, testified that she was “terrified” when her husband became upset for an unknown reason following her birthday celebration at a South Lake Tahoe restaurant.
She said Prehoda removed a Mossberg 500 shotgun from the wall of the home and fired it into the ceiling, while telling her, her 73-year-old mother and 77-year-old father to get out of the house.
“He said ‘I’ll kill you’ to all of us,” Kent testified.
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All three people then tried to get the gun away from Prehoda, who had allegedly been drinking for several hours before the incident.
During the struggle, Prehoda punched his mother-in-law in the head and kneed his father-in-law in the groin, Kent said.
Defense Attorney Paul Palant questioned the credibly of Kent’s testimony, noting the couple is currently going through divorce proceedings.
Palant said it was “unbelievable” that Prehoda could attack his in-laws, while still maintaining control of the shotgun.
Prehoda faces several charges from the alleged incident, including three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, three counts of elder abuse, one count of discharging a firearm in an inhabited dwelling and one count of making criminal threats.
The El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office has also charged Prehoda with illegally possessing a fireman because he has a previous misdemeanor battery conviction.
Prehoda is scheduled for arraignment on April 20.
During a hearing in South Lake Tahoe on Friday, the defense attorney for alleged serial killer Joseph Nissensohn said he will need about a month to contact 115 potential witnesses in the case.
El Dorado County prosecutors have charged Nissensohn with the 1989 murder of South Lake Tahoe teenager Kathy Graves, as well as the 1981 murders of 13-year-old Tammy Jarschke and 14-year-old Tanya Jones in Monterey County.
About 70 percent of the 115 people are connected to the Monterey murders and 30 percent are related to the Graves murder, chief public defender Rick Meyer said.
After questioning the people on the list regarding their recollection of events surrounding the case, Meyer said the defense will be ready to lay out a briefing schedule.
The next hearing in the case is scheduled for May 22.