Suspect in slaying of ex-Yokosuka sailor is denied bail

By ALEXANDRA SELTZER | The Palm Beach Post, Fla. | Published: April 4, 2013

PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Palm Beach County circuit court judge this morning denied bail for the man suspected of fatally stabbing a U.S. Navy seaman in his girlfriend’s Boca Raton home.

Paul Charles refused to come downstairs to face Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge James Martz this morning. But because he did not face the judge Wednesday morning, because his personal attorney did not show, Martz decided to set the bail amount without him.

“I’ve given it two days now and he’s refused to come down,” Martz said. “I’m going to take that as a voluntary absence.”

Charles, 24, of Lantana, has been held in the Palm Beach County Jail since March 25 on charges of burglary and two counts of attempted felony murder for allegedly stabbing Matthew Charles Snow and Vanessa Vandermeeren-Sanchez.

Snow was pronounced dead Monday at 11:44 p.m. at Delray Medical Center.

After being notified that Snow had died from his injuries, Boca Raton Police soon after announced that Charles would now face a first-degree murder charge.

Snow enlisted in the Navy in 2010 and was assigned to the USS George Washington, which was ported in Yokosuka, Japan. A Navy spokesman said Snow likely was on leave.

Police say that Snow and Sanchez, 21, were stabbed by Charles, Sanchez’s former boyfriend and the father of her 2-year-old child. Sanchez survived the stabbing and has since been released from the hospital.

After the alleged stabbings, Charles got into stand-off with police just off shore on Palm Beach. Standing in the surf clutching a knife, he threatened to harm himself before surrendering to police.

Charles allegedly threatened Sanchez several times in the past.

The former couple had been fighting over a lack of supplies at their son’s day care. Sanchez told police Charles threatened her last week, saying their son was not going to have two parents five years from now, according to a probable cause affidavit. That Monday, Sanchez and Snow took additional supplies to the boy’s day care and then went home to the 5300 block of Northwest Fifth Avenue, off Yamato Road near Interstate 95, to take a nap.

Police said the stabbing took place shortly after noon, when Sanchez heard the front door open. She got out of bed and saw Charles standing in the living room. He screamed at her, pulled a knife or a pair of scissors from his pants and allegedly stabbed her in the chest and arm.

Snow fought with Charles but Charles stabbed him three times, then fled.

Charles ended up calling a friend and told him he stabbed the couple and didn’t know if they were alive. The friend called police.


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