Man pleads not guilty to murder of wife, father in Santa Rosa

SANTA ROSA (BCN) — A Santa Rosa man pleaded not guilty in Sonoma County Superior Court Tuesday morning to killing his estranged wife and his father at their Santa Rosa homes in February.

Dalton James Carlson, 32, allegedly killed Dale Robert Carlson, 57, and Jessica Noel Carlson, 37. Their bodies were found by friends or relatives less than two hours apart on Feb. 25 in east and west Santa Rosa.

Dale Carlson was found dead in his home in the 2600 block of Valley Center Drive at 10:53 a.m. and Jessica Carlson’s body was found in the 1500 block of Glenbrook Avenue at 12:37 p.m., according to Santa Rosa police.

Carlson is charged with two counts each of murder and burglary and one count of violating a peaceful contact order regarding his wife Jessica, according to the Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office.

He faces the death penalty or life in prison without parole if convicted of both murders.

At the time, Dalton Carlson was facing a misdemeanor charge of battery on his wife on Dec. 25 and damaging a communications device. He posted $30,000 bond on Jan. 9, according to court records.

The misdemeanor battery complaint was filed against him on Feb. 15 when he pleaded not guilty and the peaceful contact restraining order was filed and served against him. A settlement conference had been scheduled for March 7.

Carlson was arrested Feb. 24 on suspicion of being under the influence of a drug outside of his wife’s house that morning and violating the peaceful contact restraining order.

A preliminary hearing on the murder and burglary charges is scheduled for Aug. 14.

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