David Toledo's Mayfair neighbors fumed last May when a Philadelphia judge gave two years' probation to the man found by a jury to be the "Mayfair Tire Slasher."
After Tuesday's hearing, in which Toledo pleaded guilty to trying to flatten the tire of a SEPTA bus, he faced prison time.
Prosecutors say the 47-year-old may also be the vandal who damaged other tires around the 1600 block of Creston Street in Oxford Circle.
"He said he would toss screws and nails around while he was walking his dog," Assistant District Attorney Lauren McHale said, describing Toledo's statement to police after his Nov. 21 arrest, two days after the SEPTA incident.
Toledo pleaded guilty Tuesday before Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Edward C. Wright to possessing an instrument of crime, criminal mischief, and harassment.
Wright set sentencing for July 6, ordered a mental-health evaluation, and told Toledo he could face up to six years in prison. Toledo's new arrest also violates the probation sentence, exposing him to an additional seven to 14 years.
Last year, Wright said he "agonized over the correct sentence" and warned Toledo: "You're walking on a tightrope."
Toledo never admitted being the person who slashed the tires of at least 12 vehicles in 2012.
His neighbors were infuriated that he received probation, in part because before his arrest, Toledo was often the face of outraged Mayfair when TV crews interviewed residents about the spate of tire slashings.
Toledo and his wife were forced to flee their house on Aldine Street and sold it at a $42,000 loss.
On Tuesday, Toledo, a butcher by trade who said he completed ninth grade, said little except to admit to the new charges.
His wife, Yvonne, his vocal champion at trial, sat in slacks and a pink sweater with "LOVE" on one sleeve. She wiggled her fingers weakly as Toledo left court.
Assistant District Attorney Tracie Gaydos said that in September, Northeast detectives began fielding complaints about nails and screws left under cars in the 1600 block of Creston Street, where Toledo then lived.
On Nov. 19, a SEPTA driver near the Comly Street depot spotted a man bending over and putting an object near his bus' rear tire and later found a glue mousetrap embedded with nails.
Gaydos said the SEPTA worker identified Toledo in a photo, and he was arrested two days later.
Toledo's attorney, William J. Brennan, also defended him last year. He said he was struck by the strange turn of events and couldn't resist joking.
"I'm tired of this case," Brennan said, "but it's good it ended this way. A trial would have been a blowout."