Woman stabbed in Charles Village

Bystanders quickly capture, hold suspect described as homeless man

May 28, 2007|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,sun reporter

The assailant — A 57-year-old woman was stabbed repeatedly in the back in an attack yesterday in Baltimore's Charles Village neighborhood by a man who stole her purse.

The assailant - described as a homeless man in his 40s - was captured moments later by two men who witnessed the attack about 4:30 p.m. in the 2600 block of St. Paul St., police said.

The victim, who had been carrying groceries home from a nearby Safeway supermarket, was reported in serious condition at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Her name was not released, but police said she was an employee at the Johns Hopkins' Wyman Park Health System in nearby Remington.

Kim Martin, an employee of Johns Hopkins Children Center who lives in the 2600 block of N. Calvert St., said she was talking on the telephone to her sister when she heard the cries of the victim.

"I removed one of my window screens so I could look all the way out and saw a woman being attacked and screaming," Martin said. "I never heard such a horrible sound in my life."

Martin said she ran outside and saw blood pouring from the woman's back and a large gash in one elbow. "Her white shirt was covered with blood up to the shoulders and blood was pouring from her back," she said.

A man known to her as Joseph Nichols, a maintenance man for a nearby apartment building, "came out of nowhere" and tackled the attacker as he fled toward 25th Street, Martin said.

A detective said a second bystander assisted in the man's capture. Names of the men who held the suspect for police were not released.

Police said the victim, an employee in the health system's human resources department, was walking in front of Margaret Brent Elementary School in the 2600 block of St. Paul St. and carrying her purse and a bag of groceries when she was attacked and stabbed multiple times in the lower back. The man fled south on St. Paul toward 25th Street.

A serrated knife believed used in the attack and the woman's purse were recovered at the scene of the arrest, and charges of attempted murder, first-degree assault, robbery and theft were pending against the man, police said. He was being held at the Northern District police station last night.

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