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Man dies in Lynell Avenue stabbing
James Sandoval
James Sandoval has been arrested and charged with murdering Francisco Padilla in an unincorporated area of Ceres. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

A Wednesday afternoon stabbing in a residential neighborhood of the unincorporated area of south Ceres resulted in the death of a 48-year-old man and the arrest of a 53-year-old homicide suspect.

The Stanislaus County Sheriff Department responded to a 1:57 p.m. call about the stabbing in the 2500 block of Lynell Avenue west of Highway 99 and north of Service Road. Deputies found Francisco Padilla of Modesto with a fatal wound. He was transported to the emergency room of a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Deputies detained James Sandoval, 53, of Modesto, during their initial investigation. He was later arrested and charged with murder by homicide detectives.

Detectives would not release any details about the nature of the stabbing.

Those who have tips about the case may leave an anonymous tip by calling Crime Stoppers at 521-4636. Tipsters can also e-mail tips at, or text them to CRIMES (274637) by typing "Tip704" plus the message and be eligible for a cash reward.