Man convicted of threats against San Mateo defense attorney he stabbed 8 years ago

REDWOOD CITY (KRON/BCN) — A man with a history of mental health issues was convicted Monday of making threats against a defense attorney who he stabbed in the back eighteen years ago, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said Monday.

Edward John Kelleher, 61, was convicted by a jury Monday of one count of felony threats, Wagstaffe said.

The jury found him not guilty on a related misdemeanor count of making annoying phone calls, Wagstaffe said.

Monday’s conviction is connected to threats Kelleher made in March 2013 against defense attorney Robert Courshon. Formerly a Foster City resident, Kelleher moved to the East Coast after the threats were made but was later extradited to face trial, Wagstaffe said.

The two men have a history dating back to the 1980s and 1990s, when Courshon represented Kelleher on several criminal cases.

Kelleher stabbed Courshon in the back at his San Mateo office in August of 1997 following a verbal dispute, but the defense attorney recovered from his injuries.

Kelleher was found incompetent to stand trial for the stabbing in 1997, but later pleaded no contest in 1998 to assault with a deadly weapon.

He served one year at Atascadero State Hospital and was sentenced in 1999 to three years in prison. He then remained in a court-supervised conditional-release program for several more years.

Kelleher, who has a previous strike for the stabbing, could face up to 8 years in prison, according to Wagstaffe. He is scheduled to return to court on Jan. 4 at 9 a.m. for sentencing.

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