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Suspect Gives Up In Party Knifings

Bill Jarrad was trying to defend his brother when he grabbed a kitchen knife and stormed into the middle of a fight that erupted at a party in northeast Spokane, witnesses and police say.

Police say Jarrad, 21, plunged the blade into two teenagers he didn’t know - best friends who showed up uninvited at the party Friday night.

One, Michael Loyola, 18, died after paramedics at a nearby fire station couldn’t revive him.

His friend, Michael Dennis Jr., 18, remained in serious condition at Deaconess Medical Center late Monday. The knife pierced his spleen, cut his intestine and punctured his lung, barely missing his heart.

“He can hardly talk,” said his aunt, Diane Dennis. “He was just trying to save his friend and got knifed right straight in the back.”

Jarrad’s father brought his son to the police station about 9 a.m. Monday. His surrender was arranged by Detective George Benevidez.

Jarrad, a Rogers High School graduate, was booked into the Spokane County Jail for first-degree murder. A second charge of first-degree assault will follow, police said.

His parents, Ken and Dorie Jarrad, refused to comment.

The trouble broke out shortly after 1 a.m. on the 4200 block of East Wellesley, at a house rented by four young men. The tenants - ranging in age from 18 to 23 - bought a keg of beer for a party. They had been renting the tidy white house for the past three months.

They closed off the main floor to visitors and kept the party in the basement, which has a door leading outside. About 25 friends showed up at first, said two of the tenants, who didn’t want their names used.

By midnight, more than 100 people - most of whom they didn’t know - were at the house, they said.

One stranger went up the stairs leading to the main floor and kicked open the locked door, the tenants said. Then he blamed the damage on Bill Jarrad’s older brother, Calvin.

A small scuffle followed, and the stranger was asked to leave. Suddenly, a large fight broke out and people poured into the yard and street, the tenants said.

“It was such a mess,” said one of the renters, sporting a puffy black eye. “There hadn’t been any fighting, nothing, all night long and then all of the sudden there were fists flying and people everywhere.”

Another tenant said he stood on the front porch and saw his friend Bill Jarrad holding the knife in the street. The tenant also saw Calvin Jarrad getting punched by a group of people, but said he didn’t know who they were.

A group of people whom police have not identified drove Loyola to a fire station on Bigelow Gulch Road, where he was airlifted to Deaconess. Other partygoers helped Dennis to a nearby house on East Nebraska, where they left him on the front porch. The resident called for help.

“I can’t believe someone would just leave him there,” Dennis’ aunt said. “Michael’s not a fighter. He’s responsible and nice … He was just trying to help.”

Neither Loyola nor Dennis has criminal records.

Jarrad has been convicted six times, three for assault, one for theft and two for being a minor in possession of alcohol, records show.

His criminal history dates back six years, to when he was 15.

The tenants on East Wellesley went over the fight Monday, trying to figure out what happened. They said they feel badly about Loyola’s death. “There was no need for the knife,” one tenant said. “It was out of control.”

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Color Photo