Machete used in fatal Atwater attack

April 29, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Authorities in the North Valley are trying to determine what led a suspect to attack another man with a machete.

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The attack happened during a barbecue outside a home in Atwater Sunday evening.

Investigators say 61-year-old Joseph McDonald - a transient - and others were guests at the home. But after some heavy drinking, the gathering turned ugly during a scuffle between 30-year-old Antonio Cruz Guzman and McDonald.

Investigators also say Guzman attacked McDonald with a machete, leaving him with severe cuts to his neck and arms.

"A witness told officers that they saw the suspect who fled the scene use what we call a machete," said Lt. Sammy Joseph. "And took the office where the suspect had dumped the machete as he fled the scene."

The suspect was found hours later at a trailer home not far from the crime scene.

McDonald died from his wounds at a local hospital. Guzman now faces murder charges.