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Suspect sought for random sword attack

Wed., Aug. 22, 2012, 1:46 p.m.

Spokane Valley Police investigators are seeking help locating a man accused of twice hitting another man in the head with a sword during a dispute Monday night over something else.

A 41-year-old man, who was not identified, told Deputy Jeffrey Getchell that he was walking in the area of 12300 E. Portland Road at 8:30 p.m. when he encountered a black Jaguar parked in the middle of the road and a black male in the driver’s seat yelling at another male standing in a yard.

Outside the vehicle stood a woman who was also yelling at the man in the yard. The victim said he tried to avoid eye contact and walk around the verbal dispute. But the woman, later identified as 48-year-old Lillian Howell, advanced on the victim flailing her arms as if she were going to hit him, sheriff’s spokesman Deputy Craig Chamberlin said.

The victim put his arms in the air to try to defend himself and then saw the suspect, later identified as 27-year-old Nicholas Howell, advance on him with a sword.

“The victim said (Nicholas Howell) swung the sword at him and struck him on the left side of his head,” Chamberlin wrote. ”The victim said he tried to defend himself and was struck a second time with the sword on the left side of his head.”

About that time, neighbors rushed to the melee and were successful in taking the sword from Nicholas Howell, Chamberlin said. A witness followed the Howells in the Jaguar to the area of 11600 E. Empire Way.

Deputy Getchell responded and arrested Lillian Howell on the charge of disorderly conduct, but he was unable to find Nicholas Howell.

Deputies have probable cause to charge Howell with first-degree assault. Anyone with information about his whereabouts is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

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