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Guilty: 5 years for 2012 stabbing

Posted: April 11, 2013 - 10:20pm  |  Updated: April 12, 2013 - 12:13am
Charles A. Abbott, 33, wipes away tears during his sentencing hearing in Juneau Superior Court on Thursday. Defense attorney Thomas Collins is seen at right. Abbott was charged in connection with a stabbing at the Super 8 Motel last summer.   Michael Penn / Juneau Empire
Michael Penn / Juneau Empire
Charles A. Abbott, 33, wipes away tears during his sentencing hearing in Juneau Superior Court on Thursday. Defense attorney Thomas Collins is seen at right. Abbott was charged in connection with a stabbing at the Super 8 Motel last summer.

A 33-year-old man was sentenced to serve five years in prison for stabbing someone during a party in a Juneau motel room last summer.

Judge Louis Menendez imposed the sentence for Charles A. Abbott Thursday in Juneau Superior Court in accordance with a plea deal.

The victim in the case, identified in court records as 25-year-old Leon Paul, survived being stabbed twice in the torso with a four-inch-long folding knife. Paul did not attend the sentencing hearing.

Police responded to the Super 8 Motel on June 15 after receiving a 911 call from one of the motel employees. A police investigation revealed about 10 people were in the room and drinking alcohol when a fight broke out between Abbott and Paul, Juneau Police Department said at the time.

Police did not say at the time what the argument was about, but attorneys said Thursday it was regarding seating arrangements in the room — apparently, Abbott and a woman were sitting on the bed when Paul asked them to move, which prompted “bad talk” and led to the stabbing, they said.

Abbott and the woman fled the premises, but they were located by police crossing Egan Drive near McDonald’s. He was arrested and later indicted on two felony assault charges.

Originally, Abbott denied his involvement in the stabbing to police, according to an affidavit. But he pleaded guilty to a reduced felony charge — one count of third-degree assault — earlier this year. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors agreed to drop the second assault charge.

On Thursday, Abbott admitted responsibility and apologized. He said he regretted drinking that night, especially since he had been sober for the past nine years.

“I wish I had went home instead of drinking,” he said.

He choked back tears when talking to the judge about his 4-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son. He said he wants to be sober for them and that he hopes one day his children will forgive him.

Defense attorney Thomas Collins said his client is like a different person when alcohol is involved and that Abbott wants to receive treatment and attend programs in prison.

Third-degree assault is a class ‘C’ felony that can carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison. Since Abbott has two prior felonies, he was placed in a presumptive range of three to five years to serve.

A plea deal reached with prosecutors called for the maximum five years given his criminal history. Assistant District Attorney Amy Williams said he has at least 12 prior convictions

The judge noted the prior two felonies were for similar conduct in that they involved assaulting someone while under the influence of alcohol.

• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.

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