A Pompano Beach man is recovering from multiple knife wounds in a hospital; he’s also facing a murder charge in the stabbing death of a roommate. While the young man charged with the murder admits that he was involved in the violent scuffle, our South Florida criminal defense lawyers understand that he claims he was acting in self-defense.
The two men, who both lived at a halfway house-type residence, had been roommates for just a a few days. According to the 23-year-old man charged with the crime, the victim, a 57-year-old man, attacked the defendant as he was lying on the couch at around 5 A.M. Fighting back, the young man claims he grabbed a knife in order to defend himself — twenty minutes later, the attacker was lying dead outside.
According to the Sun Sentinel, the 23-year-old remained at the scene of the fatal fight and was present when police arrived. He was then transported to Broward North Medical Center with numerous knife wounds, including three to his back, two to his abdomen, one to his stomach, one to his pelvic area, and one to his left arm.
The three stab wounds to the defendant’s back indicate that, at some point, he was attacked from behind, for if he was stabbed in the back by someone standing in front of him, the angle of the entry wounds would indicate as much. Thus, the stab wounds on his back seem to corroborate his story, namely that he was lying on the couch when the eventual victim attacked him by surprise.
Another thing to consider is the fact that, in addition to sustaining a number of other gruesome stab wounds, the 23-year-old stayed at the scene of the incident. As our criminal defense lawyers know, often times, in situations in which a defendant is guilty, he or she flees the scene in an attempt to not be caught by law enforcement officers. The fact that this defendant remained at the scene of the fight indicates that he had did not fear questioning and/or the discovery of his association with the altercation, perhaps due to his innocence.
Police reviewed security footage obtained by cameras at the facility, and claim that, in the video, the 23-year-old is shown acting as an aggressor, standing over the body of the 57-year-old and continually stabbing him in the back. While this might seem to imply that the young man was indeed the true aggressor, the video cannot explain what happened before that scene; it is entirely possible if not probable that the young man was retaliating and subduing the man after being attacked, out of fear that he would be attacked again and that his life was thus in danger.
Law enforcement officers also point to the fact that they found blood on the bed in the victim’s room, implying that the fight took place in that room, as opposed to in other rooms in which the 23-year-old said the melee transpired. Again, such a finding does not necessarily mean that the defendant is guilty; perhaps the defendant, after being attacked on the couch in another room, chased the attacker back into his room in self-defense. The defendant, like all Americans, deserves a fair trail.
Our criminal defense lawyers know that these types of situations can be incredibly confusing; one should be careful not to rush to judgments until all of the evidence is reviewed. There has already been one victim due to this fight — it is the job of the justice system to make sure that there is not a second, by doing everything possible to avoid sending an innocent man to prison.